Folding Books: A Spark into Imagination

The creative process is a call into the world of awakening and embarking on a journey into the imagination. When we let go of prescribed ideas and formats we encourage a freedom of expression that is not necessarily linked to the concrete workings of the mind and to the world around us. Book making is a venue in which we can enter into this imagined state of awareness.

As I  explore the vast arena of making books I am  continually surprised at the possibilities open to experiment with different structures. One such form is in the category of Folding Books. In a conversation with artist and educator Joan Turecki, I was  further inspired at the depths in which she explores this art.


                                                                          The Accordion Book is one of the many styles of folding books which Joan T. creates. Within this format she shares the opportunities that are presented when ‘there is no beginning middle or end to the structure. There is a lyrical quality that allows ideas to flow outside the parameters of a standard book format.

Folding books have a sensory, sculptured quality to them – as the book unfolds stories are created that can change as they are viewed from different perspectives.

Folding books encourage surprises as they move back and forth, opening some sections while closing others to form new combinations or juxtaposition.



Folding books are playful where words transform into pictures and pictures become words.

When random words work seamlessly with strong imagery they become a form of poetry.’



As I consider all of these possibilities I am struck with the metaphors contained within these books, art like life does not often happen in a linear arrangement. Usually we circle back, come at, or face our edges in ever expanding potentialities. Occasionally we happen upon a  clear resolution but more often then not, change allows us to revisit all of the big questions in life. ‘Who am I, What is my place, and How am I to be now’ are universal explorations in being human. Through our imagination we can play with an art form that lends itself so beautifully to this exploration. Folding books offers this.





About Joan Conway

My artistic passions are poetry and collage. But I am curious human, always exploring new mediums, new opportunities for creative expressions.
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