During her twenty-year career, Fall 2019 Artpace Resident Juana Córdova has approached topics influenced by the places she has lived. Her work explores the role of the individual in contemporary society and its relationship with nature. Her installations and objects express concern for the environment.
Inspired by Juana’s care for nature, in this activity, you will create an artist book documenting plant and seed specimens. An artist book is a “publication” conceived as an artwork that allows for a physical experience.
Nature (fresh leaves, twigs, seeds)
Mod Podge (DIY “podge” recipe: 1 cup of glue, 1/3 cup of water; stir vigorously).
Paint brush (foam brush works best)
Paper (any size; stiff paper, such as construction, drawing, and watercolor paper, will work best)
Supplies for embellishing your pages and cover (watercolor, markers, colored pencils)
Glue (glue stick, Elmer’s, and tacky glue will work)
Board (cardboard, cardstock, Bristol board)
Ribbon or cord
- GO OUTSIDE! Gather fresh leaves, seeds, and small twigs. Lay fresh leaves inside the pages of a heavy book overnight or until leaves lay flat.
- Apply Mod Podge (or DIY “podge”) to one side of your fresh leaves, twigs, seeds. Allow to dry before applying Mod Podge to opposite side.
- While the Mod Podge dries, create your book pages and covers.
- Cut your paper into three equal pieces, one page per plant specimen.
- Cut two pieces of board the same size of your pages to create the front and back covers.
- Decorate your pages and covers with watercolor, markers, or colored pencils.
- Punch a hole at the bottom in the center of the first page and use this as a template to mark the placement for punched holes on additional pages and covers.
To read about Juana Córdova’s 2019 residency exhibition, Chronicles of Uprooting, please visit our Residences and Exhibitions page.
Samples by 2020 Education Intern Ryene Sanders.