23 Sandy Gallery is pleased to present HELLO HEDI, an international juried exhibition of book art celebrating influential artist Hedi Kyle. This show features 56 works inspired by the myriad structures Hedi has invented during her long career as artist, conservator and teacher. Hedi has revolutionized the field of book arts with her penchant for play, material explorations and willingness to share.
Hedi’s innovative book structures have hugely impacted the field of book arts. Inspired by the old books she learned to preserve as a conservator, her ongoing hoard of found objects, and architecture, Hedi has invented everything from her “signature,” the widely popular flag structure, adapted from a concertina fold; to the elusive Wunderkabinett; to the multi-pocket “blizzard book,” which she came up with one day when snowed in at her studio. Her complex and delightful structures have spread through the book arts world by way of workshops taught near and far.
The artists showcased in HELLO HEDI have done a magnificent job of emulating and building off of Hedi’s designs, encapsulating Hedi’s spirit of playfulness and transformation. Standout pieces include Velicate by Karen Hardy (above right), a delicate and somewhat unsettling book made out of real human hair. The flag structure enables the “soft tips of hair [to] brush over the viewer’s wrists,” encouraging a very physical and visceral experience of the piece.
Elsi Vassdal Ellis’s work, Desert Dreaming: Explorations & Excavations of HK in Greater Syria, (above left) requires an excavation in itself. It incorporates a multitude of Hedi’s structures in “30 books, artifacts and envelopes,” which are then packed into a lunchbox-style box.
Dorothy A. Yule, who took workshops from Hedi herself nearly forty years ago, celebrates Hedi with HEDIDAY: A portable holiday to celebrate the work of Hedi Kyle (shown at right). This piece incorporates Wunderkabinett “gift boxes,” a flag book of “applause,” and much more.
Image credits. Top of page: Charlene Asato, Joan Iversen Goswell, Dorothy Yule