Hina by Shereen LaPlantz

$90.00 - Please contact 23 Sandy for current availability.
23 Sandy Gallery is pleased to present this limited edition hand bound book by an artist who is often credited with sparking the modern day explosion of interest in the field of book arts. This spark was lit back in 1995 when her seminal book, Cover to Cover, was first published. Shereen's work is the reason many artists are active in the field still today. She inspired a generation of artists with her own collectible limited editions and her accessible, commercially published book with easy-to-follow instructions on how to make books as art. The Day I Became Me is a limited edition artist book, one of the last available titles by a remarkable artist who left us much, much too early and is dearly missed. Shereen LaPlantz was an incredible researcher and scholar. She was a voracious reader and had a curiosity about life, humanity, events, dragons, objects and things in general. Shereen and her husband, David, used to frequent their favorite Japanese Restaurant, the Samurai Restaurant in Eureka, CA. Every March, to commemorate Japanese Girl's Day or Doll Day, the owner would create a visually intriguing display from her collection of antique Hina Dolls. Shereen was always fascinated by the dolls and their display. Eventually, she decided to do an artists' book on Japanese Hina dolls. She began by researching Hina dolls and then photographed all of the dolls displayed at the Japanese restaurant. From all of this visual imagery and her extensive research, Shereen designed and developed this incredible Artists’ book. David tells us that he has always felt that Hina Dolls book was one of Shereen's most imaginative and visually powerful creations along with the her Jewish Wedding Rings Book. In describing the Shereen's Hina Doll Book, David explained, "Once the elegant, tall paper image is untied and allowed to expand the Hina Dolls book springs to life with a commanding, visual storytelling presence (much like the maker) and a slip out compartment that contains the coolest looking book Shereen ever created! The power of Shereen's Japanese Girls Day celebration dolls tells an enchanting tale for women of any age or ethnicity. The dolls tell a story, the story is magical and the reader's heart can't help but be filled with joy and majesty."

Artist Bio

Shereen LaPlantz is an internationally recognized book artist and author. Her work has been represented in countless gallery exhibitions and museums throughout the USA, Canada, Great Britain, Europe and Africa. Her basketry or Artists’ Books are represented in numerous permanent collections, including The National Museum of Women in the Arts.

Some of the commercial books she’s authored include: The Art and Craft of Handmade Books; Cover to Cover: Creative Techniques for Making Beautiful Books, Journals and Albums; Innovative Bookbinding: Secret Compartments and Hidden Places (currently being re-published by her husband); Plaited Basketry: The Woven Form and The Mad Weave Book.

Besides her commercial books, LaPlantz has published an average of 12 Artists’ Books per year until being diagnosed with cancer.

LaPlantz was a frequent lecturer, juror and curator and taught “hundreds, if not thousands” of book arts, basketry and fiber arts related workshops over the last 30 years of her life.

Until her death on September 11, 2003, Shereen lived with her husband, David LaPlantz, a jeweler and metalsmith and Kashira Ojime, a black chow chow dog on a hilltop near the Pacific Ocean, surrounded by Northern California redwoods.

A Special Note From Shereen's Husband, David LaPlantz

"Shereen had a wonderful Jewish Mother, her name was Frimma. Frimma and Shereen's Mother were good friends and so Shereen was lucky to gain another Mother. Frimma was very special to Shereen and vice-versa.

I remember that Shereen had such a grand time researching the Jewish wedding rings and discovering the magic and symbolism in the often, intricate imagery. She was the epitomy of intelligence, could remember more than most people, had a penchant for understanding history and lived like a scholar.

Every artists' book that Shereen ever created was and still is, all Shereen, filled with knowledge, research, passion, courage, love and respect for her followers and readers.

I needed to connect with Shereen, since the anniversary of her final transition is coming up soon—9/11/2011. I am sad. I miss my best friend and lover. I miss her voice, the crack between her upper two front teeth, her very long legs and her spirit, which guided my life for so many years. She was the glue that helped hold me together and I played the same role for her life. Our life was a perfect mix. Together we were unstoppable and had the power to do all we wanted to do. Thus, Shereen lived a very fast and short 56 years.

I hope this gives you some fleshed out pictures of the Tall Lady. It comes from my heart..."

Thanks & Smiles, David

Artist Statement

Books are an intimate object; we curl up with them and take them into our beds and baths. My Artists’ Books give me a chance to participate in that intimacy. I want to involve my audience, to have them (you) peek inside openings or under flaps and open doors. I wish to give to my audience (you) a time to pause and simply enjoy an object. With luck, I will also give you a heart-melt moment.

There are six major elements that I try to blend together when making a book:

1. text 2. typography 3. illustration 4. page design 5. binding structure 6. presentation

These elements combine both two and three-dimensional art forms with verbal skills. It’s quite a technical stretch, especially since I’ve always been a 3-D artist. Adding 2-D skills is opening up new possibilities, like digital prints. Of course, these prints have words/text; a print isn’t all that different from a page.

There’s no single theme to my book’s subjects. If something crosses my mind, it could easily become a book. However, a reoccurring theme is how-to or instructional, usually how-to make books. Often these books are small artists’ books bound in a manner that’s described. My illustrations are starting to show a preference for medieval beasties — found in the margins of illuminated manuscripts.

Currently creating books is just fun. I know we’re in a new incunabula period, and as such, we’re developing how books will be perceived in the future. I consider this as a very exciting period of exploration, pushing the structural and design limits. For example, if the Mayan Book of the Dead is a bowl, should we add bowls to our bookbinding repertoire? Most people don’t think of a bowl as a book, but are we being ignorant? How do we (I) make a bowl feel like a book to a general audience? An incunabula period opens lots of questions.

I believe if we each answer the questions with our hearts, we will develop a true definition of B-O-O-K.