Narrative Self

Narrative Self is made up of 20 hardbound sketchbooks, 20 dust covers, 5 Plexiglas shelves, and 10 aluminum brackets. Each dust cover has a part of my image on its cover. The backside of each cover has a portrait of Rembrandt in his sixties. There is also a black and white photo taken by Man Ray of Marcel Duchamp as Rose Selavy on the back where a book author’s photo is traditionally displayed. Duchamp’s face has been replaced with mine. Each book has one name of an emotion on the spine, which is that book’s title. The words were provided by Betty Cleeland. The graphics were done by Norman Wald and Laurie Sherman. The printing was done by Dun-Wel Printing.

This piece plays with the idea that selves are socially constructed entities. Rembrandt was the first artist I learned about from a book of his self-portraits, which was given to me by my father. The concept for this piece is mine but others did most of the cover design, text, layout, and printing. Similarly, our selves are also constructed to a large degree by others.

Installed dimensions: 3’6” X 5’