speak/listen

Smashing? Or protecting? What to do?

By John-Paul Flintoff

I recently received an email. It was from a woman who had come to my bookmaking workshop at Wigtown book festival last autumn. She said she’d been making books ever since.

And she’d been drawn in a roundabout way to a cultural restoration project in Baghdad’s bookselling district, where a car bomb had killed many people and also (less important but very important all the same) had destroyed many books.

The project Anna had heard about involved asking book-artists to “reassemble” some of the lost cultural inventory. As she put it in her email:

Emboldened by the idea that having made at least one book entitled me to call myself a ‘bookmaker’, I offered to take part, and was slightly surprised to be accepted. Who, me? But surely I’m not a REAL bookmaker??!

She continued: I am asking for contributions, and if you should feel you would like to send something, I would be delighted, and indeed honoured.

I’m so pleased that somebody who came to one of my workshops has gone on to such great things, and of course I’m chuffed that she asked me to contribute. Here’s what I made:

Posted: February 9, 2013