text by Gary Michael Dault
photography by Nicole Dextras
2005. Edition of 125.
Each book 3 x 7" closed; open approximately 18" wide. Boxed set of eight books 3.75 x 7.5" by 4" deep. Printed on Epson Enhance Matte paper with Ultrachrome archival inks. Printed on the recto with color photographs and white text on a black background. Colophon printed with ochre background on the verso. Covers constructed of Rising museum board with a dye cut rectangle on the front, exposing the title page. Slipcases digitally printed with black archival ink on Fabriano Ingres paper. Wooden boxes constructed from basswood by David Bradford of the Alder Bay Boat Company.
Dextras is a Canadian photographer and book artist based in Vancouver. Her new series Myths consist of eight accordion fold books illustrated with photographic images pertaining to Greek mythology. The text in each book is by Toronto based writer and critic Gary Michael Dault. He has written poetic prose for this series recounting the tales of: Aphrodite, Atlas, Icarus, The Muses, Narcissus, Poseidon, Persephone and Zeus.
Dextras' photos are theatrical and luxuriant. She collaborated with artists, dancers and actors as models for the various Greek gods and goddesses. These deities are accompanied by architectural details shot in Greece, Turkey and Italy.
Each title contains a quote from an ancient Greek philosopher alongside a dedication to the memory of Thomas Lang, Professor of Philosophy at the University of Toronto.
The Deluxe Edition, numbering from one to twenty five, is comprised of the full series of eight slipcased books, housed in a wooden box. The Regular Edition, numbering from one to one hundred pertains to the individually titled books; each tied with a black ribbon and enclosed in a cellophane bag. All books are numbered and signed by the artist.
Deluxe boxed set $550 (SOLD)
Individual Title $60 (SOLD)
We think of
standing armless in the Louvre,
but it’s hard to believe
in so mineralized a goddess of love
when Botticelli has given us
his golden, ephemeral,
vision washed ashore on sea foam.
sweetly sprung from a clamshell,
was a very busy Olympian
~love’s flowery work is never done~
the great Zeus’s hand
(and indeed all of his parts),
only to be forced, as a result,
to marry Hephaestus,
the Roman Vulcan,
to whom she was
notoriously, exuberantly, extravagantly
delicately but persistently prolific,
as love must be.
Amor vincit omnia:
love conquers all~and everybody.
Her having generated Olympian babies
with Ares, Hermes, Dionysus,
and even with the watery Poseidon,
probably made her the right choice
to receive, at Paris’s hands,
in that infamous inaugural
the shining Apple of Discord.