Book Spine Poetry was pioneered by American conceptual artist Nina Katchadourian in the early 1990s. The basic principle is to create a cluster of books, whose titles make a poem when read in sequence:
The Sorted Books project began in 1993 years ago and is ongoing. The project has taken place in many different places over the years, ranging form private homes to specialized public book collections. The process is the same in every case: culling through a collection of books, pulling particular titles, and eventually grouping the books into clusters so that the titles can be read in sequence, from top to bottom. The final results are shown either as photographs of the book clusters or as the actual stacks themselves, shown on the shelves of the library they were drawn from. Taken as a whole, the clusters from each sorting aim to examine that particular library’s focus, idiosyncrasies, and inconsistencies — a cross-section of that library’s holdings. At present, the Sorted Books project comprises more than 130 book clusters.
from Nina Katchadourian.com
Anyway, the idea quite took my fancy as I have a lot of books. So I spent a bit of time browsing through my library and came up with a couple of sequences that I rather liked.The hunger games Written on the body Eat me An echo in the bone
Finally, I couldn’t resist using some of my favourite jewellery books to create a book spine poem. What do you think?
Thanks for a fun intro to Book Spine Poetry, Michelle! There are a couple of others playing along, including my sister Heidi, who knew Nina Katchadourian in the early 1990s. Why don’t you pop over and see what they came up with??