Projects    Publications      Teaching      Talks Biography Links Contact
An Alphabet (in collaboration with Edward Buckingham)

Amos Fortune Road

Silkscreen print on museum board, 12.5 x 9 inches each

An Alphabet is a print project in which the letters of the Latin alphabet have been silkscreened on separate cards. The letters may be arranged and rearranged to spell out messages or convey ideas or statements. The exhibitor of the work (the organizer, institution, gallery, curator, artist, owner or borrower of the work, etc.) determines the message. Each alphabet set contains one copy of each letter. The exhibitor has total freedom to select or compose a text, but it must not repeat letters (a pangram) or an additional alphabet set or sets must be borrowed. All letters not used in the statement (including those from additional sets) are displayed in a stack as "open storage" in the exhibition space alongside the arranged message.

My father, Edward Buckingham, made the letterforms for An Alphabet. He taught elementary art from 1961 to 1999. Every year he showed his sixth-grade students a method for quickly cutting out letters of the alphabet freehand from sheets of paper without any measurement or drawing. When the children completed their alphabets, he asked them to compose a poster or sign that made a statement. Ten years after he retired from teaching, I asked my father to demonstrate his cut-paper technique again. The resulting letterforms were used to make the silkscreened prints.