Back at Turn the Page 2019 – the artists’ books fair

So SEVEN collective made our second trip to Turn the Page to peruse the artists’ books and to see some local-to-us artists – from the Leigh-on-sea / Southend areas – who’d travelled up to Norwich to showcase their creations:

“The aim of turn the page artists’ book fair is simply to provide an exhibiting and selling platform for the book arts and to raise public awareness of this intriguing art form.”

And, this time, seeing as we were attempting to make our own art books from scratch, we were really taking note…

Chris Ruston – Noticing Nature

Our bookbinding tutor Chris Ruston was at the fair showing her beautiful artist books, many of which explore her interest in climate change:

“Earth’s story is a constant thread through her work. She invites us to think about how the past, present and future come together.”

The Ark, which has been included in the Agri-Culture / Seeds Links exhibition in association with the Svalbard Global Seed Bank, featured:

“[P]ages [which] act as ‘seeds of thought’ – touchstones to inspire us as we face increasing social, economic and biophysical challenges.”


“Loose leaf pages are held between lunaria annua (otherwise known as honesty seeds). They are a reminder of the hard truths facing us in dealing with these challenges – as well as a symbol of hope and renewal.”

And Chris wasn’t alone in using creative formats to explore some serious themes…

Gwen Simpson – Collective Threads

Connecting threads project book

Gwen was at Turn the Page to present her Collective Threads community textile project, which was created in response to the collapse of the Rana Plaza factory in Bangladesh, back in 2013.

The large-scale hanging – like a huge patchwork curtain – is created from 1,130 rectangular pieces each representing the number of people who died in the tragedy.

Each section has been contributed by members of the public – including SEVEN’s Kim, Juliet and Jo – and features everything from seed-stitched furnishing fabric to hand stamped lettering, smocking, and hot press printing on silk.

Gwen has said of Collective Threads:

“Alongside acknowledgement of this incident, the project generated discussions about our ‘throw away culture’… [And it] has encouraged individuals to come together in a united spirit of community, and to reconnect to their own creativity.”

Discover More

Turn the Page is a fantastic opportunity to discover unusual bookbinding techniques and flick through some fascinating pages. Intrigued? Discover more about the 2019 Turn the Page exhibitors.

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