Artist's Book, Bea Nettles, An Oxbow ABC

Bea Nettles, An Oxbow ABC. Photograph provided by the artist.

Glossary developed by Catherine E. Doubler

Accordion Book: A book possessing a binding structure with repeated counterfolds, resembling an accordion. Many accordion books, such as Bea Nettles’s An Oxbow ABC (pictured right) are constructed through folding a long sheet of paper; others, such as Susan Collard’s Interlinear, are assembled by binding sheets of paper or wood together. Sometimes known as a Concertina Book.

Artist's Book, Maria G. Pisano, Camouflage

Maria G. Pisano, Camouflage. Photograph provided by the artist.

Carousel Book: A book that incorporates several concertina or accordion books that are layered on top of one another. Maria G. Pisano's Camouflage (pictured right) uses the carousel structure to form pop-ups within her book. Usually this kind of book looks like a normal book when it is closed; but, it can often be pulled open in a full circle, resembling a carousel from the side. Also known as a Star Book (as it can resemble a star when opened and looked at from above).

Artist's Book, The Slapdown, Damara Kaminecki and Jeremy Schmall

Damara Kaminecki and Jeremy Schmall, The Slapdown. Photograph provided by Booklyn Artists Alliance.

Flag Book: Originally developed by book artist Hedi Kyle, the flag book consists of an accordion spine upon which the artist attaches rows of flags to opposing sides of each of the spine’s “mountain” folds. The Slapdown (pictured right) is one example of a flag book. When the book is pulled open quickly, the flags in the book often make a flapping sound.

Artist's Book, Lise Melhorn-Boe, What's for Dinner?

Lise Melhorn-Boe, What's For Dinner? Photograph provided by the artist.

Meander Book: Usually incorporating concertina folds, a meander book takes the accordion book structure further by manipulating folds so that the book can open not just in a straight line, but can turn or open into a circular pattern. Lise Melhorn-Boe's What's For Dinner? is an example.

Artist's Book, P.J. Farmer and Patrice Baldwin, The Tarzan Chronology

Patrice Baldwin, The Tarzan Chronicles. Photograph provided by Vamp and Tramp Booksellers.

Tunnel Book: A book structure, usually folded concertina- or accordion-style, in which the center of the book has been cut out so that the reader can see through all the book’s pages. Many book artists incorporate other elements within the cutout portion of a tunnel book; Patrice Baldwin’s miniature tunnel book The Tarzan Chronicles (pictured right) possesses these kinds of add-ons. Also known as a Peepshow Book.

Sources Consulted:

Johanna Drucker, The Century of Artists’ Books.

Book Arts Web:

The Colophon Page: