Artist's books fuse text and art in an interactive sculpture — children's books for grown-ups, in a way. They tell stories using text, pictures, and structure.
Six artist's book editions are currently available for purchase. Please see below.
Stephanie Gibbs both creates original artist's books using printmaking and found and altered texts, and also works with artists to realize their visual narrative brings tactile, book-based editions to creative work in literature, photography, painting, and film.
These books are held in collections across the United States, including:
CalArts, Carnegie Mellon, Furman University, Los Angeles Public Library, Scripps College, Stanford University, Swarthmore College, University of California (Berkeley), UCLA, University of California (Riverside), University of California (San Diego), University of California (Santa Barbara), University of Iowa, University of Southern California, and Wesleyan University.
Craft, gender, and technology in conversation, as tapestry weaving leads to computing punch card systems. Read more here!
Ada Lovelace, Notes. Trigonometry, Chambers Cyclopaedia. Jacquard Weaving, Cabinet Cyclopaedia.
Silkscreen on graph paper. Digitally printed vintage punch cards. Quarter cloth, pastepaper covers.
The text of Enumerations. is the Note in which Ada Lovelace, mathematically trained daughter of Lord Byron, describes Charles Babbage’s Analytical Engine. This first computer was based on Jacquard looms and the Note references a specific encyclopedia article on loom technology. The book is digitally printed onto unused computer punch cards from the Los Alamos National Laboratory, in New Mexico. The Notes were published in English in Scientific Memoirs, 1843. The Jacquard Loom, The Cabinet Cyclopaedia: Arts, Dionysius Lardner, 1831.
The trigonometry imagery is from Cyclopædia: or, An Universal Dictionary of Arts and Sciences, Ephraim Chambers, London, 1728. The trigonometry screenprints in the book were printed on vintage graph paper.
The deluxe copies of Enumerations. contain representations of different forms of memory associated with the development of computing:
A full suite of trigonometry screenprints printed onto used computer punch cards. These punch cards were the computer science graduate projects of a student in New Jersey, and were sourced by placing wanted advertisements online.
A slide rule can be considered a form of external memory, an early computer. The scales on a slide rule are logarithmic, in that the spacing between divisions (the lines on the scale) become closer together as the value increases, permitting multiplication and division. William Oughtred discovered the above characteristic in 1630, when he placed two logarithmic scales that were invented by his contemporary, Edmund Gunter, alongside each other. The enclosed slide rules were constructed based on twentieth century card slide rules using logarithmic tables designed by John J.G. Savard, whose website covers many topics in mathematics, science, computers and chess.
Embroidery samplers based on magnetic core memory diagrams demonstrate the bridge of textiles and computers. Raytheon wove MIT-designed software into core rope memory using Massachusetts-based textile factories. Getting the programs right was the responsibility of Margaret Hamilton, the “Rope Mother,” who was in charge of software development for the Apollo missions to the Moon at MIT. Some programmers nicknamed the finished product LOL memory, for Little Old Lady memory.
The diskettes enclosed contain programs related to engineering, computer science, and the humanities, representing the broad range of uses to which computers are now applied.
A booklet providing a primer on base 10, binary, hexadecimal, and Roman numeral counting systems is illustrated with a range of colors, defined by their hexadecimal code, which is then translated into base ten and binary forms.
Edition of 16; 8 deluxe in clamshell with apparatus, including a suite of prints on punched cards, a set of computer diskettes, a booklet on counting, a slide rule, and an embroidered core rope memory diagram. 2018. $ 425 / $ 850
Burden of Proof. purchase
Fate is written in many forms: in the line of a palm, in the swirls of a fingertip, in the helix of a chromosome. Chiromantie, 1485/95. Finger Prints, Francis Galton. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, UN. Forensic Science, President’s Council.
While forensic science is accepted by many as inarguable proof of guilt, numerous studies have called into question both the theory and the practice of forensics, as it is often used to reinforce previous assumptions rather than to question them. Many methods commonly accepted as indicators are instead reflections of what we wish to see.
Galton, the inventor of fingerprinting, has been called "racist even by Victorian standards." In many ways, fingerprinting is the new palmistry: fervently believed, in spite of any evidence to the contrary.
Screenprints on hand dyed Crane’s Lettra. Digital printing on paper vellum. Quarter leather, abaca covers.
Edition of 16. 2018. $ 475.
In the summer of 2016, my sister sent me a text message. “Would you like our grandmother’s recipes?” “Of course!” I replied. “OK, but you should know that the recipe for bread sticks begins “1 package hot dog buns.” I was both fascinated and terrified. Family meals were an occasion more social than culinary; my memories of childhood Thanksgivings were of burnt pie and soggy vegetables. These recipes were shared at bridge groups, in libraries, while volunteering, written onto whatever piece of paper was available. The tidy handwriting unifies the eclectic mix of papers, letterhead, receipts, and to-do lists. These 86 recipe cards were collected, compiled, edited, and expanded upon throughout her life, primarily from the late 1940s through the 1980s.
Printed on Mohawk Superfine on an Indigo printer. Bound in a three part binding with stamped linen spine and gingham fabric over boards.
Edition of 50. 2017. $200.
A fully assembled kit for contacting those who have passed beyond the veil. The user selects a spirit from the photograph album; chooses the emotional distillation that will pull that spirit into this realm; and uses the bell, book, and candle in the summoning. The enclosed Ouiji board then allows conversations between the realms. The two volume artist's book provides spirit photographs (book 1) and a ouiji board (book 2). The box contains the accessories.
Printed on Asuka on an Indigo printer with Joss paper endpapers. Bound in laminated Asuka paper over marbled paper. 2016.
Deluxe edition of 15, 2 volumes housed in a clamshell box, with objects to communicate with the beyond. $700.
Edition of 50, 2 volumes in a paper slipcase. $250.
Elizabeth Blackwell, working in the early 18th century, documented many of the plants used for medical purposes in A Curious Herbal. The variety of approaches to herbs as treatments as published in contemporary literature is provided here alongside reproductions of her engravings. The engravings and descriptions are alternated with the greatest assemblage of uncontested fact, the Encyclopedia Britannica, an edition that both contains the collected wisdom of the ages, and yet still cannot escape the inherent and implicit prejudices of the times. As such, it is both a master document of information, and a constantly evolving resource that tells as much about a historic perspective as it does about dry historical facts. Here, the pages have been altered using monoprint, to bring aging and depth as a patina over the text.
Printed on Asuka paper on an Indigo printer. Bound in quarter cloth.
Edition of 20. 2016. $175.
Water is a resource that is simultaneously universally available and universally constrained: even in the midst of historic droughts, we expect it to appear, cool and clear, at the turn of a tap. We are advised not to drink out of the clearest mountain springs, for fear of bacterial contamination; to keep stores of it available for emergencies such as earthquakes or the zombie apocalypse; and yet, we wash our cars and shower and sometime have green, lush lawns are gardens. The scarcity of water is especially prevalent in the west, as rain conditions continue to fluctuate significantly from year to year as a result of climate change. This book combines archival photographs of the system that brought water to New York City, with pastepapers reminiscent of tunnels, rivers, and waterways.
Printed on Asuka paper on an Indigo printer. Full cloth binding.
Edition of 22. 2016. $175.