The Moths and Me

Musical accompaniment to this post by Aimee Mann

I picked up this sweet little book at a used book store for 5 bucks about 25 years ago.  It appears to be a field guide to moths written in German. There is no copyright date or publisher information, and I don’t read German, so I have no idea how the book came to be. It is one of those possessions that I never consciously look for or have a spot where I keep it.  I come across it now and then, either in a stack of papers or on a shelf that I haven’t looked at in months. I enjoyed looking at it when I would accidentally unearth it and ponder briefly what I was going to make with it, only to return it to its hiding spot.

The colored lithographs are really vivid and beautifully rendered, but the problem with these delicate and detailed illustrations is that they are on both sides of the paper, so to cut into one I would have to sacrifice others that are on the flip side of the page.  After 25 years of tossing this little book around I finally cut it up one day last summer and started making. I made 2 collages and will continue with the series, probably until the images are used up. The flood gates opened, well, sort of. I suppose one could argue that I should have just left it intact as a book, but the images are too beautiful not to be on display.

To me the moral of this story is that sometimes you have to live with something for a long time before it speaks to you and tells you what to do with it.  So, Marie Kondo, am I following your philosophy? Save the things that give you joy, regardless of how futile it might seem? Would she approve and do I care? Different rules apply to those of us who are makers.


You can see these collages and other works of art from Metatorus at Randolph Street Market November 23 and 24, 2019.

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