Open book

A small insight into the book that we produced – words and images are the product of conversations between Nichola and I, with print and layout designed by Aaron.

open book

‘what is the nature of the breath which moves within an inanimate object, that forms the resonance with the audience,

the intimate, the voodoo of negative space, the handbuilt work that describes the veil between us.

can I smoke on you

can I open you

can I shut you down

flip you over 

brush you

put you away

Perhaps we are enamoured with texture because we see the big world with the small. When I walk through paradise I fall into the surfaces of the plants and rocks, entrance ways.


Texture reminds me of time passing, marks made by growth, decay or movement. It makes me want to get closer to things, to touch and understand them. 

I often judge objects by the feeling of them in my hands

the detail under my fingertips

the surface, shape, weight

the warmth or coolness

I am looking for something I can’t quite understand by sight alone.

I imagine the hands that made the object – were they hands like my own? Did they strike you violently to praise you from the earth, or hack you away from your torso? What parts of you were lost, wasted as pieces or turned into dust? Some impulse willed you into existence. Even whole, you are a piece of something larger than yourself.’

Image (detail) and excerpt: Debbie Adamson and Nichola Shanley, with Aaron Beehre. Proof that we exist. Limited edition, Illam Press. 2016


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