Dancessence embodies not only the emotional and physical essence of the dancers photographed, but of the very reason coffee table art books are treasured possessions. We visit them again and again … touching the images on the paper, reliving the thrilling instant we first saw them, joyous in the knowledge that we may keep them in this suspended capsule of two-dimensional time.
The cover wrap that surrounds this Smyth-sewn book is a custom color match, handmade, no two sheets alike, Nepalese paper (from Legion Paper). A debossed frame holds a small tipped-in image that suggests the delights within.
A magnetic closure hidden by a custom bamboo element provides an elegant edge detail. The light straw color of the bamboo sliver is a counterpoint to the overall dark earthy palette, its straight vertical lines in juxtaposition to the curvaceous texture of the handmade paper.
The Mohawk Superfine used on interior pages, printed with floods of ink, uplift the extremely fine detail and the resplendent glow of Hal Eastman’s black-and-white images. The photographs are reproduced using an exquisite “quintone” (5-color 10-micron stochastic) screening process.
Viewing Eastman’s work here is like seeing the lights of a magnetic storm in the northern night sky – an unforgettable, shimmering, fluid, illusory experience. To design a book around them must be a perfectly timed movement requiring restraint and simplicity … to execute that vision in print, a delicate display of craftsmanship and balance … all flowing together to create a unique visual moment.
Dancessence was featured as a Paper Inspiration.