VOICES: Street Spirit, New York is a limited-edition accordion book that was conceived, designed, and printed by Center for Book Arts 2021 Book Artist-in-Residence Oswaldo García during his time working on-site at CBA in September and October 2021.
While in New York, García photographed hundreds of street signs and then used language from his images to compose a poem-like list of text that is both poignant and humorous.
A single line of text from one New York sign appears on each fold of the accordion book. The paper García selected for the book transitions from bright green to blue to orange to red to yellow — creating a verse-like effect for text on each color of paper. For example, the “verse” on the yellow paper reads:
Everything must go
Running or not
It’s time to let go
Come now this won’t last
Wholesale & retail
New & used
Part time or full time
All uses considered
Everything a blessing
In addition, García used 45 metal type specimens from CBA’s collection (listed in the colophon) for the work. The combined effect serves as a visual reminder of how García accumulated the text from many disparate sources.
VOICES is the result of many days of exploring the streets of New York, photographing and hand-setting words, phrases, and experiences encountered there. It was produced during September and October, as part of the Book Artist-in-Residence program 2021 at Center for Book Arts, NYC. It was printed on colorplan paper in an edition of 200.
Printed using a Vandercook Universal III and 45 metal type specimens from the Center for Book Arts collection: alternate gothic brush bulmer caslon antique caslon antique italic caslon italic century schoolbooks bold cheltenham bold chisel cooper black corvinus bold devinne dom casual egyptian bold erasmus initials ferdinand futura futura bold futura line garamond bold italic goudy old style graby condensed kaufman script lidyan bold & condensed melior monastic news gothic extra condensed nicolas cochin & italic old english optima bold orplid roy craft sans serif condense shadow spartan black condensed & italic stradivarius stymie black & medium trylon & twentieth century extra bold condensed.
About Oswaldo Garcia
Oswaldo García (1989, Querétaro, Mexico) is a photographer and art conservator who graduated from the Faculty of Fine Arts of the UAQ. He is the editor, printer, and co-founder of Gold Rain—a Mexican publisher of artist books, which won the Shannon Michael Cane Award (LAABF19), granted by Printed Matter and the Shannon Michael Cane Memorial Fund to outstanding emerging book artists and projects. With Gold Rain x Da Substanz, he publishes artist’s books, catalogs, fanzines, editorial accidents, and other experimental books in limited or spontaneous editions, mainly printed in risograph, and always in close contact with authors and artists. García’s artistic work mines documentary and constructed photography, archiving (personal and public), accumulation, and time/space through experimental film photography techniques and artist books.
- IG: @iam0sw @goldrainbooks
- On the Spot: Brooklyn Rail