Book exhibit creating buzz |
Autumn Phillips

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Book exhibit creating buzz

It’s a curious but common byproduct of waiting tables — the dreams.

If you’ve ever carried ketchup to a table of four, you know what it’s like to wake up in the middle of the night, full of anxiety. As your subconscious sorts through the day, you find yourself in a room full of demanding customers. You don’t know where the kitchen is. The restaurant is out of everything. You’re not wearing any pants.

“My Waitress Dream,” a handmade book by Roberta Lavadour on display at the Depot Art Center, pokes fun at the collective server nightmare.

“In my waitress dreams, the premise is always the same. I’ve been called back to work after years away and am trying to make the best of it, but constant frustrations arise that I have to struggle to overcome,” Lavadour writes.

Printed on a restaurant ticket book, her piece is simple, but it created quite a buzz at April’s opening reception for “The Intensive Spirit: Celebrating 22 years of the Paper and Book Intensive,” a papermaking and book arts exhibit on display through June 15.

“The Intensive Spirit” is one of the most comprehensive exhibits the Depot has shown in a while. The work in this show represents the best of the bookmaking world.

The show is a precursor to the Paper and Book Intensive two-week workshop to be held at the Lowell Whiteman School from June 6 to 17. The workshop is already full.

Viewers are required to wear white gloves while visiting the exhibit. With the gloves, the art can be held and examined and technique better understood than a show passively observed.

The exhibit was judged by local artist Laura Wait, who was once an instructor with PBI.

First place was given to “44 Anxieties,” a one of a kind book by Crystal Cawley. The cover is made of a thin sheet of mica that looks more like a cured and stretched animal hide. Inside, the 44 pages are 44 mixed media paintings — thread, oils, illustration and collage. It’s visual story follows anxiety’s journey through the body.

Artist Holly Hanessian also used mica in the creation of her tiny book, “His Story.” The cover falls open with the weight of a heavy glass cover. Inside, the fragile mica pages hold photos, typewritten text and handwritten journal entries.

“All the stories,” it says simply.