San Francisco-based artist Alexis Arnold turns discarded books into sculpture in an attempt to immortalize some of our favorite literary classics. Created as part of her Crystalized Books series, the petrified objects speak to the rise of e-books and disappearance of independent bookstores. The books are carefully bent into dynamic and irregular shapes and covered with crystals to obscure their words, giving them the appearance of geologic specimens or forgotten historic artifacts.
We’ve featured Arnold’s works before, but she’s recently produced many more of her eye-catching pieces. The artist makes her sculptures by adding borax to boiling water. She dips a book into the hot solution before bending back the book’s pages to the desired form. The borax-covered book is taken out and preserves its distorted shape as it cools, while the solution dries into chunky crystal growth.
The crystal growth obscures the text and turns the book into a nonfunctional art piece. Arnold sources discarded and found books, but she prefers to work with the literary classics or educational books such as ‘The Science of Wine’ and ‘Mastering the Art of Beekeeping.’
Images via Alexis Arnold