Chris Perry, “127 Ripples: spray”
Artist: Chris Perry (Brooklyn, NY)
Title: 127 Ripples: spray (2012)
Medium/technique(s): paper, fabric, gel acetate
Edition size: Unique
Number of pages: 550 but covers do not open and pages cannot be turned
Dimensions: 10.25 x 21 x 8.25
Books have always been a priority and it is not unusual for me to consume over 100 books in a single year. From history to science fiction and everything between, I become truly absorbed to the point where time is relative and the narrative takes over. I determined some time ago that this fascination runs deeper than any appreciation for story or character or historical account, but to what end I still had no idea.
The first book I made was for a presentation, and it proved to be a very time consuming project with a crude end result. However, I was unquestionably drawn to the process itself, of folding, binding with needle and thread, gluing and setting the pages into the cover. This experience, along with a fascination that I have always had for flipbooks, which reveal a moving picture, would blend together to give me the result I was looking for. I wanted to have the whole story laid out before me as if the flipbook could reveal all it’s contents at once.
I began with vellum, but only a few pages of imagery were visible before fading into obscurity. I wanted to see more, maybe all of the images, so I began to cut. I removed the parts of the flip that would contain the visual movement and instead replaced them with a series of holes, each one larger than the previous by a margin of one-twentieth of an inch. This process resulted in my first series of flipbooks in which the movement, while subtle, was something that was not to be found on the pages but, quite literally from within.
At this point I started to create books where the pages numbered in the hundreds and extended far beyond the covers. Some pages held form while others succumbed to their own gravity, flopping over the edges. The books became less about the cover and it’s inner portions and more about what the covers could not contain, the extrusions and the fans of spiny finger-like shapes. This progressed into the weaving of sheets of paper to form multi-books.
My latest works are more sculpture than book and the intricacies of each piece have evolved, though the original intent of this body of work remains. I set out to tell a story with books that manipulate their internal and external space, and reveal something that is utterly unexpected.