The Universal Now

Abigail Reynolds

Tower Bridge 1946 / 1979 (2005)
26 x 22 cm. Cut and tiled vintage book plates
(with detail)

I collect second hand tourist guides. Within the century of printed photographs that they contain, I search for plates that have been printed at similar scale, taken from a similar view point.

When I find a near match between book plates, I cut and fold the pages into a new single surface. The dates written on each work give the publication dates of the books I have used. Whichever has been used as the ‘base’ image is listed first.

The patterns I use to cut the two book pages into one single surface are such that all of both sheets of paper are preserved. If you were to fold all the flaps in or out, the entirety of each image will be seen. The act of folding one image into the other pushes them out into three dimensions in a bulging time ruffle.

The Universal Now works operate as a resurrection of the unregarded book plates and forgotten photographers that have stood in the same places at a different times, bringing these moments into a dialogue and into the present. The Universal Now takes its title from debates about time continuum in quantum physics.

Piccadilly Circus New Years Celebrations 1951 / 1961 (2008) 39 x 28.5cm
Cut and tiled vintage book plates

The Universal Now: Big Ben 1935 / 1982 (2008)
24.5 x 18cm
, Cut and tiled vintage book plates

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