562 Fisgard St Volume I & II are limited edition artist books collaboratively created by artists Lynda Gammon and Trudi Lynn Smith. Each volume consists of one accordion folded page printed on both sides. This two volume book was published in 2011 by flask.
Trudi called. She had rented a studio space in Victoria’s Chinatown, 562 Fisgard Street, 3rd floor. I visited. This studio was the same one I had worked in over thirty years ago. Little had been done to the interior since that time, layers of white paint, mahogany plywood nailed over narrow vertical pine boards. The layers, a suggestive archive of a place over time: A rooming house for migrant Chinese workers, a shrine room, a school, a backdrop for art production? We decided to embark on a collaborative project that would involve photographic archives and studio space and thus the two volume artist book, 562 Fisgard came into being. The project led us into archives, and then to documenting the studio inside and out in photographs, filming the studio and our actions in it, learning how to make dry plate negatives in the darkroom, printing, folding, book making, conference paper writing. All of this was underscored by discussion about the overlaps between anthropology and visual art. Our final books and installation grew directly out of our unique collaboration. Once printed four, 44” X 60”photographs form two fold-out books. Through the act of folding and unfolding, images juxtapose in various ways to create new comparisons and new readings.