The New York artist Vija Celmins has made many images of the night sky—paintings, drawings, and prints of gorgeous richness. In The Stars, she and essayist Eliot Weinberger devote an artist's book to the theme. Celmins has created three prints for the project: one print, inspired by the worn binding of an early-twentieth-century Japanese book, becomes the volume's mottled deep-blue cover. The second is a negative image of the night sky—dark stars on a pale ground. The third etching suggests an open screen composed of sky and stars. For the text, Weinberger has assembled a catalogue of descriptions of the stars drawn from around the world, and from an array of historical, literary, and anthropological sources. This mythopoetic charting of the night sky evokes the vastness of the human imagination's response to a space itself vast and unknowable.
The translators of the text are the Iraqi novelist Sinan An Toon (Arabic), the poet Bei Dao (Chinese), the translator and author Siddharth Chowdury (Hindi), the translator, author, and editor Hiroako Sato (Japanese), and the translator and Maori-language advocate Piripi Walker (Maori). 48 pp.; 3 illus.
7w x 10.5"h
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