Author’s note:  This is the fourth in a series of posts about “The Detritus Project”, an interactive library art work that I’m creating in conjunction with the Fond du Lac Public Library in Fond du Lac, WI.  For Part 1, click here. For Part 2, click here.  For part 3, click here.

In my last installment, I left on a “cliffhanger” – would I ever be able to see my project through?  Would I throw in the towel, or press on?

You’ve probably figured out by now that yes, my project moved forward.  I’m not going to let a little adversity stop me!  But that doesn’t mean that my project is progressing as I had planned….

A little backstory, in case you’re reading my guest blogging stint for the first time:  I got the idea for The Detritus Project back in February, and with the total cooperation of the Fond du Lac Public Library, I was able to see it come to life!  I’m taking all of the discarded materials found in returned library books and making a collage with it, which will then be donated to the library that has given so much to me.

Moving on….okay, so the fusible webbing didn’t work at all.  I had another trick up my sleeve – make “fabric paper”.  This “paper” is created by taking a piece of inexpensive muslin from the fabric store and affixing the paper pieces with an equal mixture of water and PVA glue.  (I’m using extra-strength glue for bookbinders, but plain old white glue will work in a pinch).  In my case, the paper I’m attaching to the fabric is the due date slips, which will form the background for my idea:

Success!  I don’t mind the wrinkles in the paper – in fact, I like the texture it’ll add to the piece.  Great!  I’m feeling good about how this is progressing!  The due date slips are definitely not going anywhere and I can continue on with my project….onward and upward!  Until next time…..

Documenting the Detritus Project is a guest blog series written by a dear friend of the Library as Incubator Project, Melissa Kolstad. Melissa is a collagist/ephemeralist who works in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. She is a member of the Fond du Lac Visual Arts collective, which has a close partnership with the Fond du Lac Public Library. The Detritus Project is a new project that Mel is working on, which seeks to document and examine what people leave – parts of their everyday lives and activities – when they return library books. Mel will document her progress on the Detritus Project twice a month until June.

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