Recently, having misplaced my own copy of the 1000 Journals Project book, I ordered another.
Seeing it again, after all these years, was astonishing.
Even now, it feels like that being part of that art journal/project was a “right time, right place” moment.
Even more bizarre, I received it at 9/11, and – a few days later – journaled in the book, describing that important moment in history. (The photo above shows part of my two pages. On the left, that’s an art journaling collage I created. On the right are my handwritten notes.)
This journal started as a round-robin project.
That is, it was a series of blank journals, sent from one person to another. Each of us contributed a page or two, art journaling in it. (See someguy’s page about this project, book, and documentary.)
It’s something we did, back then, within the arts community. That is, we mailed things to each other. (See my “Art in the Mail” category for info.)
Frankly, the internet isn’t a substitute for seeing art in real life, and even having it in your hands.
That’s why I encourage you to find a copy of this important book, so you can see it in real life. It’ll give you a wonderful overview of what we were doing, and a chance to see art journaling examples.
Your public library may have a copy. Or, you can order one at Amazon, etc.
I won’t pretend that all of the entries are meaningful, or that the art is consistently wonderful.
That wasn’t the purpose of this project.
It was about life and creative expression, at that moment in time.
Here’s my Amazon review, seeing this book again after 20+ years.
This is still a remarkable book, and part of a project that aspired to include 1000 people in round-robin style art journals.
I’m a little biased because I was one of them, and I just happened to receive the mostly-blank shortly before the 9/11 World Trade Center disaster. So, my two pages in the book are from that exact day.
(Note: I received no payment for my work. None of us did. And I have no commercial interest in this book, either. I’m just honored to have participated it in.)
The pages in this book represent art journaling and mixed-media art by a wide range of people. Some may have considered themselves artists, and many probably didn’t. We were just using journals – sometimes written or decorated artistically – in the style of Julia Cameron’s “morning pages.”
For that, this is an important piece of history, representing the cultural trends, informal art, and sentiments of that extraordinary space in time. In a way, it’s a before-and-after look at how we thought and expressed ourselves, before and after 9/11 changed everything.
In my opinion, this is a vital book that belongs in art and history courses. And, for those who love “outsider” art, it’s a peek into those who can’t NOT express themselves visually.
I’m giving this five stars for this “right time, right place” project, and the importance of documentation like this.
If you’d like to own a copy of this book, here’s the link.
(Btw, that’s an Amazon affiliate link.)