Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Book Autopsies

                                                             By Trina Boice


I just discovered the coolest book art and wanted to share it with you. Using knives, tweezers and surgical tools, Brian Dettmer carves one page at a time. He's known as "The Book Surgeon", layering pieces of old, thick books into magical masterpieces. Nothing is relocated or implanted, only removed to showcase a new "look" at the original book.

Dettmer manipulates the pages and spines to form the shape of his sculptures. He also folds, bends, rolls, and stacks multiple books to create completely original sculptural forms.

"My work is a collaboration with the existing material and its past creators and the completed pieces expose new relationships of the book’s internal elements exactly where they have been since their original conception," he says.

"The richness and depth of the book is universally respected yet often undiscovered as the monopoly of the form and relevance of the information fades over time. The book’s intended function has decreased and the form remains linear in a non-linear world. By altering physical forms of information and shifting preconceived functions, new and unexpected roles emerge."

Dettmer is originally from Chicago, where he studied at Columbia College. He currently lives and works in Atlanta, GA.   To see more of his creative love for books, check out his solo art gallery show at http://packergallery.com/dettmer2/index.php      I don't know about you, but it makes me want to write thicker books.


  1. So COOL! I'll let him do my book if he wants. . .

  2. Wow! That's neat! Does the sculpture somehow reflect the subject matter of the book itself?

  3. I saw those while using Stumbleupon last year. They are really cool! The top one was new for me, though. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Wow! That takes the idea of altered books to a whole new level! I love it!

    Thanks for stopping by my blog! Nice to meet you!