Weekend pop art: Books come beautifully alive with thematically-perfect paper sculptures

“The Bell Jar” by Sylvia Path (image via Laughing Squid (c) Bethany Bickley)

I have been reading books ever since my teachers taught me to understand how magically transportive stringing all kinds of letters could be and so, the idea that books are alive always felt very much the case every time I opened a new written adventure.

Artist Bethany Bickley has given the idea that comes have a life all their own new and utterly beguilingly beautiful meaning with these paper sculptures which have created to thematically match the books from which they are drawn.

A driving force for Bickley’s wholly unique and distinct art is her desire, notes, Laughing Squid, to bring “together narratives and images to tell a complete story.”

“I’m a creative problem solver who brings words and visuals together to tell a story with impact and purpose. If there are no visuals, I create them.”

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Back in 2015 I created a book sculpture for The Boston Globe about books becoming movies. The book I sculpted was “All the Bright Places,” by @jenniferniven. Fast forward to late 2019 and the movie is finally in the making. Jennifer reposted my sculpture on Instagram. It was such an incredible compliment. Then it was followed up immediately by a message from her husband saying he had to get it as a surprise for her. ? He commissioned me to restore and add to the sculpture as a Christmas gift. It was a huge moment for me as an artist and I thought it was the sweetest gift ever. He wanted to add them both in directors chairs on set. (Look closely at words on the back of the directors chairs. I wanted to honor their love and connection with words from the book. I always try to make it about the details.) We selected hair styles and outfits to create the perfect paper portrait of them. I’m so proud of how this turned out. I’m still so honored to be a part of such a sweet and thoughtful gift. I mean how cute are they – in real life and paper?! I love their love. Also, they both had really great hair to work with ? The movie came out on Netflix last week and I finally had a chance to watch #allthebrightplacesmovie yesterday. I cried a lot and laughed and smiled, too. Congrats, again, on such a huge achievement @jenniferniven! . . . #paperart #papersculpture #bookart #booksculpture #bookartist #paperartist #strictlypaperart #paperartistcollective #cutpaper #cutpaperart #paperpeople #paperportrait #editorialillustration #allthebrightplaces #allthebrightplacesmovie

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