Something nice to look at this Wednesday: Swedish artist Cecilia Levy, a former bookbinder and graphic designer, is creating paper sculptures of familiar objects using words and phrases carved from vintage books. She tears, cuts and shreds the pages and merges them using paste, molds, and papier maché, reconstituting the books in new forms.
“Visible traces from the passage of time, marks from previous owners and readers, paper quality and color, typography, holes after the binding, wrinkles and dog ears, olden expressions and spelling, and (sometimes) odd content: This is what determines the choice of my work material and this is what I value,” writes Levy in a statement. “I choose each piece of paper with care.”
It’s a loving act to transform these books: mapping a book onto a functional, regularly used object that “shows wear”—while also letting the words themselves be weathered—highlights the book’s utility, and its history of being read. It also places the act of reading alongside more evidently “functional” acts: drinking tea, walking somewhere. When I look at Levy’s work, I feel peaceful, and so can you: take a look at Levy’s work below.