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NATURE ABHORS  Philip Zimmermann (2003)

This book was originally made for a curated artists' book show at the University of Arizona, called Love/Terror. The very large exhibitition took place in September of 2003 at the University of Arizona Museum of Art (UAMA). This was long before I started teaching at the University of Arizona. By chance my future wife Karen was one of the five curators of the show, though we did not know each other at the time. I briefly met her for the first time at the opening for the show in Tucson when I drove over from Las Cruces, New Mexico, where I was doing an art residency on my sabbatical.


Nature Abhors is about loss, the inevitable by-product and, (perhaps pessimistically) the final result of life and love. In the previous four years I had had a great deal of loss in my life with both my parents dying (one by a hit-and-run car), 9.11.2001 and all that meant for anyone living in New York, plus romantic complications in a relationship where the two of us did not need or want the same thing. This book is a rumination on what loss has meant for me personally and also what I have found has been a more universal feeling of loss since 9.11. Although the book contains visual references to the twin towers, it is determinedly not about that disaster but more about the collateral damage from that period of time on personal relationships, and ways of moving on from that loss.

The book is 5.25 x 5.25"; printed by HP Indigo on Mohawk Superfine paper. It is 30 pages long, in a hand made slipcase and comes in corrugated-paper fold-out archival phase box. The woven spine construction is based on a model developed by Claire van Vliet from a form originally created by Hedi Kyle. The photograph on page six was taken by Elizabeth Alderman, all the others and the text are mine. To be read through on one side, then on the reverse. Accordion-folded, each sheet affixed to the next with paper tabs illustrated with segments of spinal vertebrae. The book takes about half a day to assemble each copy. Both the slipcase and the book are signed and numbered by the artist in an edition of 150. $375 plus shipping and applicable sales tax.