Project: Forget-me-not: Mothers & Sons, for Marie Watt Studio

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Marie Watt Studio
Forget-me-not: Mothers & Sons

An interpretive brochure for an artist’s installation

We edited, designed and produced a 16-page publication to accompany the sculptor Marie Watt’s installation Forget-me-not: Mothers and Sons, which was included in the Portland Art Museum’s 2008 Contemporary Northwest Arts Awards exhibition.

The installation consists of a ten-foot-tall ring, twenty feet in diameter, walled with a web sewn from secondhand wool blankets. Attached to the walls are 220 individual portraits, also executed in wool reclaimed from blankets.

Half of the portraits depict each serviceman or -woman from Oregon killed in Iraq and Afghanistan. The other half feature women chosen by Ms. Watt’s male acquaintances who reflect the Iroquois view of “mother”: mothers, but also strong women from history who have contributed to our culture in other ways.

This piece was commissioned and published by Marie Watt Studio to act as an interpretive aid to the installation’s visitors. We printed it in two colors by cold web. Good, thoughtful design need not be expensive.

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Installation

Aerial view of the installation; brochures were distributed from a pedestal made of stacked cedar, shown at lower left.

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Cover

The publication is tabloid-sized for economy and also to encourage re-use (a tabloid is not precious and can be an inconvenient size to carry; if a reader didn’t want to keep the piece, he could place it back in the stack).

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Essay, statement

We reprinted a brief essay by then-Oregonian reporter Inara Verzemnieks, illustrated with photographs taken during Ms. Watt’s sewing circles. At right is Ms. Watt’s statement.

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Catalogue

Typical catalogue pages. We documented 220 individual portraits and paired them with six-line biographies of each subject. This piece is if anything a triumph of editing: the source material was extensive, and boiling it down to six terse lines per person was quite a challenge.

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Acknowledgements

Acknowledgements, a brief biography and selected CV finish the document.

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Back cover

A detail of the installation, accompanied by institutional information.

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