Elizabeth Curran Boody
Sue Huggins Leopard
Claire Van Vliet
Thomas Parker Williams
Guild of Book Workers
Ewing, New Jersey
This palm leaf structure book is inspired by terra preta, meaning "black earth." Originating in the Amazon Basin at least 2500 years ago, it is some of the richest soil on the planet. Gold ink is added as a reference to the "riches" contained in this life-sustaining soil, which is up to two meters deep in some areas and has been shown to retain its fertility for thousands of years, even to today. The formation of terra preta soils by pre-Columbian Amerindians was key to their ability to flourish and sustain their vibrant culture. Scientists and environmentalists are currently researching terra preta soil enrichment to support sustainable agriculture and carbon sequestering. Calligraphic text in the book is derived from research on the subject as it relates to permaculture and biodynamic farming practices.
Paper, walnut and gold inks, tree root, leather. 12.5 x 6 x 6 inches. 32 x 5.3 x 5.3 centimeters. Created 2018.
As a professional calligrapher and textile artist, THERESE SWIFT-HAHN finds the book a perfect vehicle for weaving together tactile, visual stories using calligraphic mark-making, handmade papers, and other natural materials. Her work is inspired by the rich lineage of humans who laid the foundation for us in the ancient arts of their respective cultures.