© Jessica Barness
Glosses is the second volume of a larger project, Letters to X (a digital interface of handwritten letters by sixteen collaborators, transformed to phrasal templates). This project is a critique of social media and also a response to a self-imposed question: what is conversation as an object? Glosses presents a printed dialogue between handwritten letters and the designer-author’s commentary on these material things.
The contents of the sixteen handwritten letters were typographically translated and adapted as phrasal templates (like MadLibs) and printed in blue ink; they are arranged as a near-continuous stream of correspondence with all salutations and closings removed. The commentary, printed in metallic gold ink, contains excerpts from the designer-author’s essay on media, social correspondence, and human interaction (also included on related flex-disc vinyl record project hEar Pixels). Gold ink was chosen for its historical connection with manuscript illumination and glossing (marginal notations), both of which may be considered collaborative forms of writing. The act of glossing can conceal, reveal, expound, destabilize, obscure, and divert attention from a main text. As the pages of Glosses are turned, the glossing and correspondence visually shift and eventually, the annotation becomes the main text itself.
Through visual rhythm and intensely personal content, Glosses exposes the viewer to various human emotions in the form of letters (as correspondence, and as typography), and also provokes questions regarding the nature of our correspondence.
Made with LoRes 12 OT (Emigre / Zuzana Licko) and Eskapade Fraktur (Type Together / Alisa Nowak). Risograph printed with blue and metallic gold ink on French Paper Newsprint Extra White. Saddle-stitched. Dimensions are 8" x 8.25" closed, 8" x 16.5" open. 24 pages. Risograph printed by Constance New Orleans on French Paper Newsprint Extra White.