I delight in the choices that a book artist makes—the infinite becomes finite. Experimentum, a hexagonal book that riffs on Karen Hanmer’s Triangle Book structure, came together after eight months of thought, cropping, inspection, digitizing, and re-digitizing. Co-created with Lisa Rappoport of Littoral Press and Sarah Pike of FreeFall Laser, I achieved the goal: I arrived at my first CODEX with a new book.
A 17th-century Jesuit and polymath, Athanasius Kircher explored and described the nature of the earth, the seas, micro- and macro-organisms, and comparative religion in a textbook called Mundus Subterraneus. The Public Domain Review’s article about him links to a digitized copy of his great tome, courtesy of the Internet Archive.
Each hexagonal page has a photograph of an East Bay MUD (Municipal Utility District) access cover from my neighborhood in Oakland. The other side has a letterpress printed image from Mundus Subterraneus. Kircher’s 1665 diagrams and Latin text record his understanding of the forces of nature seething beneath the earth’s surface; my photos capture a sliver of the membrane between me and the unseen.