shape alphabets (2019 - )
The shape alphabet began as an installation--Belles Lettres--at PHCC in Pine Hill, NY, in 2019. I drew 13 block letters on 20" X 20" grids, cut them out, painted them black on one side, white on the other, and then folded them to create new shapes unrecognizable as the original letters. Using those folded pieces as templates, I spray painted the shapes in two colors on mdf board panels of varying sizes. At half the scale I cut the same block letters out of aluminum flashing, spray painted the two faces different colors, and then folded them into 3-dimensional forms. I had always wanted to cut out the 2-dimensional shapes in a material heavier and more durable than paper and decided in 2020 that corrugated cardboard, which during the pandemic was arriving in abundance in the form of packaging, was what I was looking for. It's easy to cut and takes paint well. I finished the alphabet in December of 2020 and on January 1, 2021, began posting (on Facebook and Instagram) a word a day made from it. To date the criteria has been as follows: 2-letter words; 3-letter present-tense verbs; and 4-letter single-vowel nouns. Pictured here are 18 of the 57 posted words.
The second shape alphabet, which is smaller and made of spray-painted aluminum flashing, will be the basis for an abcedary that I hope to publish later in 2021.