by Karine Hébert
The organizers of Overdue, the book-making show that took place from February
5-10 at the VAV art gallery, estimate that about 650 people visited the
show during the week.
Tons of people came! It was one of the busiest vernissage this year,
said Gaile Addison, a third-year Fine Arts student. The other organizers
were Beth Stuart, second-year Fine Arts, and Joni Murphy, second-year
There were four days of workshops on bookbinding, letterpress, computerized
book layout, storytelling games, talks by small press operators, and readings
by Montreal writers.
More than 120 books were shown by about 70 participants, most of them
students. They included small-press books, hand-made books, and installations,
such as a book the size of a door that could be opened, a heavy metal
book, a corset book and a digital bible.
Gaile said, People were very responsive. We didnt expect so
many! It was a lot of work to keep track of everything.
The art gallery was set up as a home space, with furnished rooms. Joni
explained, We categorized the books according to what kind of books
go in a bedroom, in a living room, and so on.
Gaile continued, We wanted to put books in an environment where
people could look at them in a more relaxed way, in a living environment.
Visitors were allowed to pick up the books and read them.
Since it was a very friendly environment and there were so many
books, many people came back more than once, Gaile said. Many of
the artists donated their books after the show.
It was their common love for books that led the three students to organize
Books are something anybody can make, Gaile said. Theyre
less scary to make than paintings. They are more private.
People are freer to do what they want, and less afraid of not doing
it the right way, Joni added.