05 June 2012

Tree of codes

The novel was a translation from Polish of childhood memories; it was made into a 21-minute animated film. And then Jonathan Safran Foer did this to it -
How to read it, though? Here's how: "The difficulty, with Tree of Codes, is part and parcel of its beauty: the holes in the pages let the pages behind show through, giving a three-dimensional layering of text, with words we won’t encounter until later sneaking into sentences now. The reader has to learn to lift the words s/he needs from this thicket (or cloud – it almost works like a tag cloud.) ... The wondrousness of the die-cut technique is in a side-effect, though Foer alludes to it in his title: it shows how to read is to decode. The found text, diced into layers, creates its own chaos, its own white noise, from which you must pull the sense."

To make the book, first it was printed and then some really complicated die-cut plates were made - great pix of the shards falling out! - and then it had to be collated by hand. See a short video here.

I bought a copy online and it came wrapped in coordinated paper. Delightful.

This article compares it with the latest edition of Tom Phillips' Humument, which uses erasure in a different way.

1 comment:

Jill Dian said...

I could spend ages reading your Blog Margaret...so very interesting.
Love the bag and the burnt crochet!

The Book Making video was simply amazing...

Thanks for sharing exhibition pix too