Thursday, November 19, 2015

Helen Douglas, In Mexico: in the garden of Edward Jones, Weproductions: Yarrow, Scotland, 2014

Another little beauty from this long-time Scottish book artist. Invited to do a residency by the Mexican artist and publisher Martha Hellion, Douglas found her way to a wonderful surrealist paradise called Las Pozas (The Pools) that was created by the English poet, artist and surrealist Edward James. Located north of Mexico City the land was originally a coffee plantation that James acquired in 1947. At the beginning he planted orchids and settled exotic animals on the plantation but after a bad frost in 1962 destroyed many of the plants, he started creating his "Surrealist Xanadu" by building surrealist sculptures and buildings. By the time of his death in 1984 he had built 36 concrete sculptures spread out over 20 acres of jungle. 

Douglas' book is a celebration of this wonderful, and little known, artistic site.  Looking carefully at the pages one sees extra digital elements inserted into the original photographs in the form of birds, plants and patterns that reflect Douglas' desire to incorporate into the book elements of both contemporary Mexico and the weaving, embroidery and beadwork traditions of the indigenous peoples.

92 pages at 5" x 5" each, and open the width is 44ft 2". 

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