Janet Marie Bradley

What is Palimsest?

Palimpsest definition:  1)  Having besides its present writing one or two earlier erased writings.  2)  A parchment, tablet or other portion of writing material that has been used twice or three times after the earlier writing has been erased.

Palimpsest is an altered book that began life as 'The Book of Spies-4000 Year of Cloak & Dagger' by Brian Innes.  It is a history of espionage which provides a succulant vocabulary perfect for the gleaning of words  suitable for reflecting either one's theme or perhaps one's emotional state.  Its illustrations are mysterious and provocative.

I began with the first page by quickly reading the text without paying attention to its meaning.  I  circled the words which captured my attention or spoke to me in some way.  The remaing text was buried under paint, photographs, ink, tissue paper, silver and gold leaf and other mixed media materials. I worked around the words giving them each a place in the compositon as well as new found freedom from their structure in sentences and paragraphs.   I then passed the book on to various people in my life instructing them to think about something that was on their minds or in their hearts.  They were then allowed to chose a page (actually two pages) which attracted them for some reason.  They were asked to scan the text without really reading, choosing words that connected with their thoughts and or feelings.  I followed up with the interpretation and art work.  Palimpsest, a work in progress, began 9 years ago.

The You and I Ching.  The book is also called the You and I Ching because it is about the people in my life and somehow, the work took on a mystical and interpretive quality and because I have a sense of humour.

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