"I believe the books have their own ways of finding [collaborators]. My work is to be … available."
Aaron Friend-Lettner is an artist, photographer, writer, publisher. There is nothing he can't do. Aaron was at the helm of the project that is anglepoise.
Here is a glimpse into his remarkable mind ...
I’m an artist, among other things. I got an award in 2016 to publish a book called Doorways. This marked an entrance into book-making as a form of ritual and healing. The book is dedicated to the past for this reason.
Root first, then branch. I try to really feel the body, the language, the texture. Books are very much alive for me, so it’s all very sensuous. I make my way around a project in circles––like tuning a drum.
I walk a lot. I climb trees. And I read, listen to music, play cards. I’m a bit of a hermit, and so often my companion is silence. That’s when I feel the most … available. Inspiration for anglepoise came from the land. I wanted to honour the rivers and trees; the stones and sand; the muck. I was born here and I love this place very much.
anglepoise was a journey into Margot’s world; Oliver Schroer was a guide.
Margot was very trusting; she let me do all sorts of wacky things with her poems. She ok’d the final proofs but didn’t actually see the book in-hand until it was printed, so I was able to sneak in a surprise for her––rubbings of her favourite oak tree.
I believe the books have their own ways of finding [collaborators]. My work is to be … available.
Margot’s writing is so visual; a lot of the cues were already in the text. The rest came from Elizabeth’s diaries: the font colour, handwriting, paintings. And from Oksana. I chose the binding style initially for its name, dos-à-dos (“back-to-back”). I saw Margot and Elizabeth walking the same shorelines on different sides of time, backs touching.
[Working with Hayley] felt like an apprenticeship. I learned a lot by studying Hayley’s work. She also helped me let the book go. That was hard to do. As for my practices … rest, ritual, revival. And always appreciation. Many hands touch these books––they’re filled with love.
anglepoise is syncretism. It was a lot of work to bring so many elements into balance. The book has a distinct Margotness ... playful and cryptic and curious. Reading her work is not always easy, or even comfortable; she goes right to the edges of nonsense. The beauty is a … way in.
Purchase your copy of anglepoise at Daed’u Books https://www.aflaflafl.com/store/anglepoise