|Title||The Case For Virginity|
|Subtitle||Purity, Possession, Perversion|
|Artist / Creator||M. Bernadette Castor|
|Artist's Nationality||United States|
|Place of Publication||Portola Valley, CA|
|Process / Technique||Epson InkJet 1280|
|Structure / Binding||Medium: Davey archival book board, Ashai, Japanese book cloth. Box, accordion book. Journal, hinged with commentary from variety of internet blogs. discussion, and girls who attend purity balls.|
|Medium / Materials||Collage, image transfer, image manipulation, found objects.|
|Paper Stock||Somerset 120 lb print paper|
|Number of Pages||Accordion book 15 pages. Journal 30 pages.|
|Dimensions (WxHxD)||17.5 x 10.5 x 8 inches|
|Signed & Numbered||Yes|
"It is one of the greatest superstitions of the human mind to have imagined that virginity could be a virtue" Voltaire. This one-of-a-kind-book is an exploration and reaction to Purity Ball rituals and all their trappings. It reflects on the Purity Balls, which evolved from the Christian right 'abstinence only' movement. This book asks the question: "Is the case for virginity purity, possession or perversion?" I explore identity to purity by reinterpreting, and re-purposing images and words from a variety of purity ball events and abstinence programs in juxtaposition with old engravings and found objects. The Box opens to reveal a center ballroom, with a cabinet box on each side. The cover incorporates slips cases containing two books. One book is an accordion revealing a surreal narrative of the purity ball events. The second book is a journal where I invite the audience to participate by writing their reactions.
Artist BioBook Artist Bernadette Castor lives in California and was a professional graphic designer for 34 years. She has a BFA in graphic design from Iowa State University, College of Design. Looking for a more tactile involvement in art making, she begin studying the book arts at the San Francisco Center for the Book in 1999. Between 2005 and 2008 she made a transition from a successful career in design to book artist. "I extend traditional book binding methods into experimental book forms, using assemblage. My work is influenced by the work of Joseph Cornell and a variety of assemblage artists. I am currently creating books that explore identity through science and nature; reinvented family and personal histories; and social-political ideologies.