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Deleted/undeleted: the liminal typography of Lowell Bodger

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Abstract:

The letterpress broadsides of Lowell Bodger, an American artist active c.1980–2000, have been valued as demonstrations of so-called ‘pure’ typography or as examples of typography for typography’s sake. My article attempts to refute that narrow claim and establish their rightful status as works of fine art whose technical concerns are one aspect of a deeper, imaginative engagement with the condition of liminality – the sense of being ‘betwixt and between’, or caught between conflicting views, beliefs, identities. ‘Deleted/undeleted’ analyses the visual properties of the works as well as their idiosyncratic texts (most by the artist), and draws on archival materials such as published lectures, private notes and correspondence to document the artist’s creative engagement with issues of identity.

Keywords: art; creative non-fiction; liminality; minimalism; printing history; typography

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1386/btwo.1.2.185_1

Affiliations: Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

Publication date: March 1, 2011

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  • Book 2.0 is a new, interdisciplinary peer-reviewed journal which aims to publish articles and reviews on developments in book creation and design, (including the latest progressions in technology and software affecting illustration, design and book production). It will also explore innovations in distribution, marketing and sales, and book consumption, and in the research, analysis and conservation of book-related professional practices. Book 2.0 aims to provide a forum for promoting and sharing the most original and progressive practice in the teaching of writing, illustration, book design and production, and publishing across all educational sectors.
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