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[BKARTS] Book or Sculpture?



This is indeed an interesting question, and one that can pull you one way or
another with no definitive answer. I think, as suggested, you have to answer
it for yourself.

Regarding the suggestions (and these folks are a whole lot more
professionally oriented to the topic than I -  I can offer only personal
opinions):

Bradley, Allen offered these definitions:
"1. a written or printed work of fiction or nonfiction, usually on sheets of
paper fastened or bound together within covers.

"2. a number of sheets of blank or ruled paper bound together for writing,
recording business transactions, etc."

These, however, I find too narrow since they focus on the codex form and
ignore many alternate forms used in other cultures that are seriously
considered to be "books" - rolled scrolls of vellum, papyrus, cloth, etc.
Clay tablets. Palm leaf and other records/tales that are recorded on books
that fold, fan, and so forth.

This very beguiling definition by John Cutrone:
"With a book there is a progression--of time, of story, of some
element. We begin somewhere and end in a different place."

is, perhaps, too open-ended. It could include Winter Counts on leather or
lodge walls; petroglyphs and pictographs on cliffs, cave walls, and lava
flows that have a chronology of events; even the tracks of a hare across
snow....the sudden zigzag that describes evasive action, the ultimate ending
of the trail in a scumble of snow, a few drops of blood, a tuft of fur and
an eagle feather.

As a writer, I love content....but a book can have a non-verbal or
non-imagery context that implies content, so words or pictures are not
always necessary. Or a "linear content" book can be altered in a way that
removes the normal progression, but that implies the progress of the
artist's vision within its context.

We are also now confronted with "books" in electronic format (e-books and
readers), interactive texts (a new process will allow cell phones to "read"
code on a book page and animate the image, provide voice instructions, etc.)
ARE these books?

It all seems to boil down again to this being a question you must answer for
yourself.
"When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said in a rather a scornful tone, "it
means just what I choose it to mean--neither more nor less.

Cheers from a bookseller (sorry, no cuneiform tablets or papyrus scrolls
available) on a gorgeous autumn day,

Lee

Lee Kirk
Cats are composed of Matter, Anti-Matter, and It Doesn't Matter

The Prints & The Paper
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