Exhibition Announcement: ‘STONES’

We are really excited to announce that in the Spring of 2023, there will be an exhibition of ten fine bindings by Faith Shannon at the Crafts Council Gallery in London.

Curated by Fellow Annette Friedrich, the exhibition will run from Wed 15th March to Sat 15th April (open Wed – Sat, 11am – 5pm). Entry is free and there will be a catalogue available to purchase for £10.

‘Stones’ is the final body of work by the late Faith Shannon, Honorary Fellow of DB. The commissioning collectors Kulgin D. Duval and Colin H. Hamilton had to be patient, as the group took sixteen years to complete. The wait was well worth it though, as the series turned out to be a stand-alone masterpiece. Blurring the lines between fine binding and sculptural exploration, Faith Shannon created surfaces as smooth as basalt and equally cold to the touch, spreading lichen, and folded up-thrusts, to name a few.

Each book comes within a bespoke box that is already part of the artwork, revealing layer upon geological layer on the book and beyond, as carefully constructed faint impressions lead onto the handmade endpapers. The making of this group engrossed Faith completely. Living on the West Coast of Scotland, her daily rounds with the dog got longer and longer as they became a main source of inspiration for her work: translating nature into tangible, intimate objects: books.

The books were shown first at the Gabrielle Keiller Library in the Dean Gallery, Edinburgh in 2006, and we are very pleased to present them once more to the wider public. Next to the group of fine bindings, the visitor will see trials and experiments, ephemeras, and even one of Faith’s homemade breads, burnt to a black lump, when she had yet again got lost in the process of making…

This is the first of three exhibitions that Designer Bookbinders is invited to curate at the freshly opened Crafts Council Gallery in London. We are very grateful to Colin H. Hamilton for sharing the books with the public and his kind support, as well as to Hannah and Shannon Tofts, Faith’s children, for their enthusiasm and guidance.