Despite the fact that books are primarily tools used as depositories for information, book lovers are capable of becoming surprisingly attached to them as objects. We love the smell of their bindings, or the dank odor of thousands of them slowly moldering in a library basement together. Some of us panicked for a second when we thought e-readers might wrench tattered paperbacks from our hands. For those of us who love books not just as information receptacles, but as objects, Andrew Hayes sculpture series, Altered Books, will be a delight.
By deconstructing and reconstructing books, Hayes strips them of the meanings their authors imbued them with and replaces the author’s intent with his own. "Unbound blocks of text lose their original meaning when I cut the pages from their bindings,” he writes. "This allows me to respond to the shape and texture of the paper and give new meaning."
Formerly a professional welder, Hayes incorporates steel into his work, adding an unyielding strength not present in the books’ original form. "Bound together, the pages and steel become something new and unified,” writes Hayes. "No longer a book on a shelf, but a unique object with its own strength and story."
For more information on Andrew Hayes' work, click here.