Tau Blau / Dew Blue
By Barbara Beisinghoff
[Rheinbach, Germany]: Edition Die gläserne Libelle und Gerard Paperworks, 2013. Edition of 38 + 2 AP.
7 x 8.7"; 11 sections. Handset in 16 and 12 pt Diotima and letterpress printed by Wolfgang Blauert. Handmade paper from flax, cotton and hemp by John Gerard. Text collage, etchings, water beam drawing, paper font, watermarks, and paperwork by Barbara Beisinghoff. Text in German and English. Binding and box by Vera Schollemann. Accordion spine with sections sewn to the folds with illustrated paper covered boards. Laid in blue cloth-covered box with titles in German and English stamped in red on the front cover and spine. Signed on the colophon by Gerard and Beisinghoff. Numbered.
German artist Barbara Beisinghoff considers the flax plant from flowering to harvest through her art and text from several sources. Text collages in German and English with etchings, water stream drawings, paper paintings, and watermarks using handmade paper. The spine has sewn-on layers to correspond to the thrones of the flowers on the stems bending back and forth in the wind.
Barbara Beisinghoff: "John Gerard made the paper from pure flax. I had grown flax in the Lustgarten Kunstpfad around our house. I sowed it and the whole area came to visit to see the blue blossoms in the tail end of June. We tore the flax out in autumn and dew retted it which means we laid the bundles down on the ground; dew, rain, and sun let the fiber rot. The dew ret degrades the woody parts through bacterial action and destroys the natural gluey layers of the bark, and allows the separation of the bast fibers. We found an old couple in the neighboring village who still know how to break down the fiber. We got all the tools you need to prepare the flax and organized a 'flax festivity.' 200 people came! After the festivity I invited Dutch artist Hiltje Talsma, who did the breaking, skutching and hackling, so that the fibers are mechanically separated from all the other plant parts."
The title refers to the "die Tauröste und die zartblaue Blüte" (the delicate blue flower). Includes three watermarks: the golden triangle (indicates the leaf position around the stem); section of the flax stem shows the points around the center of the stem, the fibers; and, the third watermark shows the plant with the knots. The fibonacci numbers are drawn with water in freshly drawn flat paper.