Rachel Smith/Art Smith

Rachel Smith/Art Smith

How did you become involved in artist’s books?As an artist I started making books during my time on the Sheffield Hallam Fine Art MA course, and this interest has continued through my current PhD research.

What is the focus of your practice?

I am interested in both the conceptual system and material object of the book, and how these might be used to explore how sense is sought in language. I use drawing, photography, and writing to materialise error, distraction, and association as part of my disruptive devotion to reading. Fragmentary techniques are employed to reject immediate coherence, opening spaces to reflect on minor processes of meaning-making.

What are you working on currently?

Currently I am working on a set of three books for the practice submission of my PhD. Their status is ambiguous as to whether they are art works, remain as practice research artefacts, or function between these possibilities. Each book object accompanies a particular chapter of my thesis but has also existed in a previous form, definitively as an art work, exhibited or shown as such, but additional material has now been added, the original reformulated, as part of the on-going process of cutting together-apart. One of my interests is how art practice might offer ways of visualising and materialising the thinking or sense-making process in relation to the transmission of physical language. I am using art practice to draw attention to thinking, materialise acts around the construction of sense, as well as celebrating interruption and error as tools for breaking a seemingly never ending flow of information.

social media: twitter @rachelartsmith