Sunday, November 26, 2006

found drawing too...

a few weeks ago i was lucky enough to do some research at harvard with a friend of mine in the rare maps and rare books libraries. i was looking mostly at comparative maps, and also at some mid-late 1800's astronomy books. i took a lot of photos which i'll post at some point, but the most wonderful thing i found was on the back page of one of the plates in one of the astronomy books.

most of the older educational books had a lot of foxing and condition problems and the back sides of the plates were really beautiful as "shadows" of the images on their fronts. several of them were so far gone that they had little image ghosting, but were just a wash of browns (these things will clearly disintigrate at some point due to the acidity of the paper content and their lives before ending up here). the washes look a bit like the stain paintings done by victor hugo with coffee and tea remnants (some of my favorite visual works of all time); and in the midst of one of these hazy fields, someone had scrawled a star and some "planets"... a little bit of humble poetry left for someone to discover, a hundred or so years later...

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