The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
48 pages | 39 images
This book features sixteen drawings of Arlington National Cemetery by the contemporary artist Ewan Gibbs. Gibbs lays a grid over photographs that he takes, then places pencil marks in the grid, creating darker and lighter tones. The artist wanted the drawings to be viewed as one “contemplative row” on a gatefold within the book. I proposed an alternative, because gatefolds are often overlooked and are difficult to unfold and fold, and because one side of the gatefold would always be interrupted by the rest of the book block. I had one dummy made with an eight-panel gatefold and one with an eight-panel jacket. All agreed that the jacket, with the large drawings on one side and the small drawings of individual graves on the other side, was a successful solution. The jacket is short, revealing the cover type, which is de-bossed to reference the carved letterforms of the headstones. The warm white 100% cotton paper matches Gibbs’s drawing paper. In the interior, the full bleed green pages subliminally represent the endless expanses of green grass that surround the gravestones at Arlington.