Pencarrow 2015

Pencarrow
Coptic book in box  2015

Nelle M Scanlon’s ‘Pencarrow’ is the saga of a family of early settlers in New Zealand in the late nineteenth century. The story begins as Matthew Pencarrow waits at Wellington Harbour for the boat carrying his future wife, Bessie, to arrive from England. The tale follows the Pencarrow family over several generations as they face the challenges of a new life in a new country far from home.

My book tells the Pencarrow story. The box, when closed, represents containers: like the ships they travelled in, their steamer trunks, Bessie’s hope chest. I used the original blue book covers top and bottom which, with their mottling, brought to mind the choppy ocean crossing. I wrapped the rest of the box with sea-blue bookcloth to represent the pristine waters around their new home. The box, when opened, becomes the two islands of New Zealand, and the book itself is uncovered. The coptic binding echoes the ropes used in both sailing and bushcraft, while the rough-hewn quality of the torn pages represents the building of new settlements from materials at hand. Maps inside the box add to the sense of place, while the handwritten dedication on top reinforces the spirit of family.

Pencarrow was made for, and exhibited in, Biblio-Art 2015.

Upcycled book pages
Size when closed 190 w x 118 h x 94 d mm

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