[Tom Biederbeck] July 4 has its own graphical lexicon. The familiar themes: celebration (fireworks), patriotism (red, white and blue), relaxation (picnics, cool dips). There is a serious undercurrent of elegy, too, which April Sheridan touches on
in her letterpress tribute to Ray Bradbury, who died June 5.
Sheridan, studio technician and special projects coordinator at the Columbia College Center for Book and Paper Arts (CBPA), reflects on her composition, which she also printed there:
“This June while I was preparing for Printers’ Ball — a free celebration of the printed word that we host every year — I was glad to be able to sneak in some studio time while our students are out looking for inspiration for the upcoming semester.
“When I read Ray Bradbury’s last story ‘Take Me Home’ in the June 4 issue of the New Yorker, I couldn’t help but feel nostalgic for my own 4th of July celebrations with extended family in Waukegan, Ill. This print is in honor of my hometown hero’s words of wisdom.
“The CBPA hopes that Felt & Wire readers share their traditions this holiday with love and lights — all the way to Mars!”
Broadside: “Stuff Your Eyes with Wonder,” a tribute to Ray Bradbury
Paper: Mohawk Superfine White Eggshell 80 lb. cover
Ink: Handschy and VanSon in bubblegum, silver and sky blue
Typefaces: William Page’s Mexican (a chromatic wood type) and Monotype Perpetua (cast by Michael Bixler)
Press: Vandercook Universal I
For the record, here is the complete quote, from Fahrenheit 451:
“Stuff your eyes with wonder,” he said, “live as if you’d drop dead in 10 seconds. See the world. It’s more fantastic than any dream made or paid for in factories. Ask no guarantees, ask for no security, there never was such an animal. And if there were, it would be related to the great sloth which hangs upside down in a tree all day every day, sleeping its life away. To hell with that,” he said, “shake the tree and knock the great sloth down on his ass.”
Special thanks from the Felt & Wire crew to April Sheridan and her colleagues at the Columbia College Center for Book and Paper Arts. And we wish all Felt & Wire readers a holiday celebrated in good heart and health.
Related, from Felt & Wire: Kit Hinrichs talks about flag ephemera.