Look Don't Touch A pop-up adapation of Heliodorus' Aithiopika: Lust, Devious Plots, Intrigue and much more
by [Transformer Press] Lise Melhorn-Boe.
Kingston, Ontario:: Transformer Press,, 2016.. Edition of 10. 10.75 x 8.5"; 28 pages. 13 double page pop-ups. Color photocopied on 100 lb. acid-free card stock. Text printed in Optima, with titles in Delphian. Bound in cloth boards with paper title label on cover. Signed and numbered by the artist. Lise Melhorn-Boe: "Look, Don't Touch was inspired by The Aithiopika, a novel written by a Greek named Heliodorus, in 400 BCE The story takes place about 800 years earlier, in Kush (now northern Sudan/southern Egypt,) Egypt, and Greece. It's amazingly modern, with toy boys, and lots of lust, but there are storms at sea, pirates, bandits, and wars as well. I created the book as a commission for an exhibition, entitled Just One Look, at the University of Washington. The exhibition was curated to augment a conference on Classicism and Feminism. I really enjoyed the research - I learned a lot - and re-discovered the heart-stopping beauty of the drawings on Greek vases. Because the story has Greek, Kushite, Egyptian, and Persian characters, I culled my cast of characters from the pages of art history. It was a challenge to distill an entire novel into 13 pop-up pages - telling the story with added commentary - it could easily be a TV mini-series - Sex in the Classical City, maybe, or a 'western' set in the desert, with pirates, elephants and giraffes." Just Look, Exhibition Catalog: "If An Ethiopian Story can be compared to a cinematic epic, then Lise Melhorn-Boe, in Look, don't touch, has matched its sensational and byzantine plot with dash and drama. The novel, with its subterfuge, romance and intrigue and its capacious cast of characters - Greeks, Persians, Egyptians and so-called Ethiopians (actually, as the artist learned, Kushites - inspired Melhorn-Boe to create a pop-up version of the tale using photocopies of actual artwork gleaned from those ancient civilizations combined with her original drawings and paintings. "With ingenious paper engineering, Melhorn-Boe captures the multi-layered narrative with an assemblage of overlapping images. In thirteen visually captivating pop-up scenes, the artist delivers a veritable ensemble of cultural and artistic diversity. Melhorn-Boe deconstructs and reassembles Heliodorus' timeline, thus providing the modern reader a clear path through this novel. "The deft combination of figures and objects sets up a shallow spatial progression that intensifies the relationship of one individual figure to another. Melhorn-Boe accompanies each scene with an insouciant interpretation of the labyrinthine tale and, like a rogue member of a Greek chorus, parenthetically adds wry commentary such as, I think we know where this is going."
(Inventory #: 22100)
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