Akina Factory took on the Fear of Disappearance project from the very early stages of the process, while the artist Mariya Ustymenko was still shooting in the streets of London. The close relationship with the photographer helped shaping the work and its final form(s): an artist edition, an affordable zine edition and a sculptural piece.
One of the challenges was to find a way to keep coherence between the three different outputs, and the choice of materials played a big part. After few brainstorming sessions he idea of Mariya was to use construction materials for the sculptural piece such as concrete and aluminium.
To use aluminium and plexiglass in a book was an exciting opportunity to explore different physical properties to complement the content: a visual exploration of identity within the ever-changing man-made cityscape of London.
Thanks to the cover of greyboard, aluminium and plexiglass, the artist edition feels heavy in the hands, and the thick textured Pergamentata paper add to the effect of something solid and ephemeral at the same time.
We started thinking about the book project while the editing was still in progress, so the ideas about form and content were growing at the same time.
The book is bound without glue, with a continuous three signature open spine pamphlet stitch with cover in the Bodoniana fashion. Easier to show than to explain. Here we go!
First of all all the covers were made. Strips of leather were used to keep together the inside of cover and back cover with an added strip of cardboard to reinforce the spine. Measurement were critical because of the heavy weight of the aluminium and plexi covers.
Meanwhile the text-block was being printed at the Akina printing facilities, trimmed, stacked in signatures and folded.
It was time to put it all together, binding the signatures using the reinforced spine as a continuous support.
Then the plexi cover and the greyboard back cover were added. This step was particularly critical because of the precision required in applying the greyboard and the aluminium (previously scratched with sandpaper for better adhesion) , to the black cardboard used as support. Double-sided scotch roll was used as well as a light spray of strong glue to reinforce the cover edges towards the spine.
Rinse and repeat
You can find more information about the book and buy both collectors and zine edition on Mariya Ustymenko’s webpage