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Frances Holliday Alford

Altered Book:

Edgy Postcards

Postcards from the Edge, Carrie Fisher (1987)

Reconstructed first edition.

Artist Statement

I chose Carrie Fisher's book, Postcards from the Edge for two reasons. I have a large collection of mail art postcards that I have made. I also share addiction with the late Carrie Fisher. Although her addiction involved far more serious levels and consequences, the addictive personality has a core similarity. The book is funny and light hearted but deals with the serious disease of addiction.

I took the book apart and separated the signatures. Each page had a postcard in staggered positions in order to keep the book from being too distorted. I hand sewed the signatures back together. The book quadrupled in size at that point. Using 140 weight water color paper, I made a new cover, incorporating the original dust jacket , collaging with cutouts and other elements. New endpapers were added. The biography and photo for Carrie Fisher were added to the front endpapers and the same for me were inside the back cover.

This book is sitting on a clear acrylic stand and is easy to browse through as the pages turn easily. The postcards are dense collaged surfaces showing mostly junk mail, product labels and commercial craft stickers. Mail Art requires an address and at least one postmarked stamp. Most of these pieces have gone through the mail multiple times with more stamps and post marks added. The mundane materials are an echo of our current time and place.

Despite a few complaints, no postal workers were damaged in the making of the post cards. Additionally, the only addiction involved in the making of this book was how hard it was to stop working on it in order to deliver it to the gallery.

Short Bio

Frances Holliday Alford is a multi media artist with a specialty in fiber and textile arts.  Her focus is narrative, in that the work is designed to tell its own story.  She has travelled extensively and finds that new experiences both inform and suggest her work and her path.

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