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Jed Speare — Crushed Buckets

Crushed buckets
Along the tracks
Storing spikes, brackets
And jams at each
Crossing sign


from Crushed Buckets by Jed Speare and Sarah Hickler


Crushed Buckets, from 1991, is an artist’s book produced with Sarah Hickler, Jed’s lifelong friend and frequent collaborator. It is dedicated to his son Nate. In a discussion with David Miller (July 10, 2018), Sarah talked about the origin of the book. At that time, Jed had moved to the Massachusetts town of Ayer with his family and the work reflects a difficult, dark period in Jed’s life. Sarah offered to work with his text, select passages, cut up and arrange it in concert with his Ayer photographs. As credited, the book was edited, designed, and produced by her. Her design gives physical space to his chronicle, creating psychological space for contemplating intimate senses of outrage and violation. We see this in the spaciousness within and between pages, echoing or counterpoint of text- and image-areas, allowance of blank pages and those given only to images. In particular, we see this in the opening and closing text sequences: italicized texts starting with “Home is going to be a problem” (four pages) and “The invisibility and divisibility of place comes down to where you are today” (five pages). The texts descend diagonally from page to page. Crushed Buckets was printed on vellum, its translucency allowing the reader to anticipate the next statement or two. Other design strategies, including multiple line spaces, indentations, and center-justified short lines, similarly require slow reading. There are no instances where text-only blocks exist on facing pages: if text is given on facing pages, at least one includes a contrapuntal image.

Adapted and extracted from Beings as Phenomena as Beings by David Miller

Jed Speare — Crushed Buckets

SKU: fp073
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  • Edition of 50, hand numbered.
    80 pages, 19.5 x 19.5 cms, wire spiral binding, uncoated textured paper, tracing paper, black & white images
    Includes a free copy of the booklet Beings as Phenomena as Beings by David Miller, an essay on the artist books of Jed Speare

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