Personal Histories Artist Book Exhibition

Bringing together artists from around the globe to share their own stories in artist book form. Sharing similarities, diversities and individual perspectives. Highlighting the dynamic world of artist books.

REDLAND MUSEUM: 12 October - 30 November 2014
REDLAND ART GALLERY: 29 March - 10 May 2015
UNSW CANBERRA: 28 September - 11 December 2015

For more information please contact the Coördinator, Robyn Foster (email:

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Feature Artist: HyunKyoung Shin

was born in Gwang-hwa moon, Seoul, Korea.  Her name is derived from her birthplace of Seoul, where her family returned after the Korean War.  Kyoung currently lives in the city of Busan.

Kyoung spent her childhood, along with 5 other siblings, as part of a large four generation family.  Kyoung's mother took great care in raising her six children even though the impact of war had left her, as well as their environment, in a weakened state. 

After Kyoung graduated from the College of Art she taught oriental painting, which she had learnt from her teacher at Gye-won Art High School.  However, feeling she was not fully satisfied she went to study abroad in the United States, where she earned a Ph.D in Education at the University of Minnesota, majoring in Art Education and minoring in Japanese Art.  

Since returning to Korea, Kyoung has been sharing her knowledge and skills with many workshops, such as "Play with Brush and Ink" and "Art Journey: Searching for the Self" at social organisations and schools.  She is concerned about the revitalisation of spirit within Korean society as everything is changing so fast in this modern era.

Kyoung is a professor of Art at Young-san University and a Representative Director at Feminist Artist Network Korea and Nun-me (Eye's Mountain) Visual Culture Network Korea.  

Kyoung has written two books: "Would You Tell Me About Your Drawing?" and "Seeing and Feeling with the Right Hemisphere of the Brain".  She has also written more than 20 research papers,
 has held 7 invited solo exhibitions and more than 70 group exhibitions, making artists' books with the stories of the artworks she has exhibited.

Kyoung is currently in Brisbane, Australia attending the World Alliance of Arts Education annual conference where she is presenting a paper on "The Importance of Visual Literacy in Education".

Kyoung's contribution to the Personal Histories exhibition is
"How I see Mona Lisa in Cultural Issue?"

Leonardo Da Vinci's Mona Liza was created by a woman image sitting outside in his painting. The image of this painting would be delightful when it was introduced first time in Asia. The technique in terms of materialism and humanism is so powerful. (There was a spiritual symbolism about substance in Asian painting). I have to admit the fact of his masterful treatment of her eyes in which her eyes appear to be alive, watching me directly and telling me something.
However the image is an illusion for me. It is like a fantasy of Western animation. I have learned English language with these kinds of images. This became my subject matter in my exhibition How I see Mona Lisa in cultural issue
I draw images coming from every word of the title as writing and drawing my drawing diary. I recognize influence of what I've seen in this painting. It is a woman sitting inside ignoring outer situation even though she has two eyes able to see and a mouth able to tell. Through this process, I see who I am.


Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Feature Artist - SARA BAKKER

is a gallery coordinator, curator and artist living in Grand Rapids Michigan.

Sara holds a BFA in Studio Art from Calvin College.  She works in a variety of media including drawing, painting, collage and embroidery.  She has recently been managing the (106) Gallery in the downtown Avenue for the Arts district of Grand Rapids where she coordinated monthly exhibitions and events at the gallery as well as hosting a weekly studio night for local artists.  She has been a contributing member of the Avenue for the Arts and Grand Rapids Comic Society and is a collector of zines.

In 2013, Sara took a 3 week bookmaking course at Calvin and fell in love with the book as an art form.  She appreciates how bookmaking lends itself so well to the merging of text, imagery, mixed media and experimental process, much like zines, comics and printmaking. 

In 2014, Sara was invited back as a guest artist in Calvin's bookmaking course, facilitating critiques and working on more content-driven books inspired by struggle and growth in personal journeys.  This past February, she curated the book show "Ancient Grains", which highlighted artists' works from the course.  This spring she has curated and participated in a book arts exhibition titled "Landmarked", involving the ways in which we map journeys, in both literal geographies and personal landscapes.  She is currently working on a series of artist books of meditations, which incorporate a mix of collage, text, print, stitching and embroidery.  The pages of these books are a collection of struggles, questions, and affirmations that mingle visually with running threads and other recurring patterns.

Sara is currently travelling in Australia and New Zealand.

Sara has made time in her busy travel programme for a two day Brisbane stop over, with her friend Teresa, in order to view the  Personal Histories exhibition.


Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Feature Artist - IRMARI NACHT

is an artist from Englewood, New Jersey, USA.
For the Personal Histories exhibition Irmari has created two small accordion books:

Books: 105 Hair Today 
This 4" book chronicles (in photographs) a year of growing my hair - from 2" at the shortest to 11" a year later."

"This 4", 40 page accordion book is a personal history of how I made (and my motivation for) a sculptural work in the round of 4 encyclopedia britannicas comprising the elements: fire, water, air, and earth."

Irmari has made artist books throughout the years, but in 2007 she began working steadily on a recycled book series -  "Saved".   This series utilises books that otherwise might be discarded and transforms them into artworks.  

The books are cut, sometimes into slivers which curl and undulate and return to the tree-like shape from which the paper was made.  Lately, the books have exploded from their spines.  

A 4" book has grown to 24" through a series of cuts and spirals reaching out to the viewer with subliminal messages.  The words on the pages of the books are sliced, slivered or torn and become interwoven with other slivers and slices to make the original meaning no longer clear, but the words are still there - creating new information, now obtained by reading only the letters that are visually available.  Or, as the words of the book extend beyond the surface of the covers, by means of the outreaching slivers, the ideas and concepts of the book move out to the viewer, perhaps generating new ideas.  The reality of the book is questioned: is it no longer a book, or is it a container for concepts?  Is it now a sculpture? Must a book have pages and words, has it changed the basic integrity of a book and become an art object capable of many interpretations?  Does it now please the aesthetic senses as well as the intellectual senses?  

This artwork, using the book as a metaphor, addresses environmental concerns, change and transformation, information received and denied, altered reality, as well as the concept of multiple imagery, which highlights the strength and energy of repeated elements.

Irmari's art has been exhibited in every major museum in New Jersey, including the Newark Museum, NJ State Museum, and Montclair Art Museum.  Her work is also in several corporate and public collections including AT&T, PSE&G, ADP, Newark Museum, International Museum of Collage, Mexico, Rutgers University, Cleveland Institute of Art, Bowdoin College, Jimmy Carter Museum and Yale Art Museum.

She has exhibited internationally, as well as nationally, and received two New Jersey State Council on the Arts Fellowships in Sculpture.  She received a second Puffin Foundation Grant for "Who Am I?", an interactive project where the viewer becomes part of the artwork.

These bookworks are in several collections and have been recently been shown at the Belskie Museum,NJ,
Lichtenstein Center for the Arts,MA,Doverodde BookArts Festival,Denmark, Westport Library, Conn,NJ State Museum,Newark Museum,WAH Centre, NY, June Fitzpatrick Gallery, ME,Univ of Northampton, UK, Wiener Library, London, UK, and in solo shows at the Atrium Gallery, Bard College at Simon's Rock, MA and the Intermezzo Gallery, BergenPAC, NJ.


Sunday, 9 November 2014

Redland Museum Online Exhibition

The Personal Histories Redland Museum 
Online Exhibition has been uploaded to the website.

Below is a direct link:

There is a pause button to the top left of the image space (when you run your mouse over the screen) so you can take a bit more time to read the accompanying text.

There are still two artists pages that need to be included,
but hopefully I will have images sorted out over the next couple of days so I can add them to the mix.

Please let me know if you spot any errors or omissions.

Thursday, 6 November 2014


                   Redland City Bulletin - Wednesday November 5 2014         

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Feature Artist - JUDY BARRASS

is an Australian artist living and working in Noosa on the Sunshine Coast of Queensland.

Judy works across a broad range of mediums, and is well known for her works in paper and the book format.  Her evocative one-off artist books often make reference to history, place, and the natural environment.  Judy's work is held in private and public collections in both Australia and overseas.

Judy also works with new media as her counter ego Juanita Deharo.

Judy's current obsession is combining traditional paper theatre and articulated paper puppets with animation and digital video techniques, but she also retains a strong connection to the tradition of the artist book.  Her recent work for the exhibition 'Fibro Coast' combines video installation with small paper constructions she calls 'reliquary boxes'.

'In a digital age there is much talk about the death of the book, but I think the elements of books, such as reading, sequence, personal interaction and imagination will survive.  The book may not survive exactly as we have known it, but it will survive both as an abstract notion and an object, in some form.

Artist books have been part of my practice for a long time.  To me, as a visual artist, there is something compelling about the book as an object, and a means of conveying ideas, as a visual message.  It is sometimes, but not always, something you can hold in your hand, smell, see, feel and interact with in a more powerful way than other less familiar art objects.  I like to think of books as a sort of personal installation, to be experienced in an intimate and very individual way, alone, with your imagination.  You need to open the box, look behind the covers, interact with the object, become lost in discovering it, and then it speaks to you.'