Micah Bloom’s Codex from The Digital Press at the University of North Dakota.
June 2017: Limited edition, numbered, hardcover print edition.
August 2017: Digital download and trade paperback.
In books lies the soul of the whole Past Time: the articulate audible voice of the Past, when the body and material substance of it has altogether vanished like a dream. ~Thomas Carlyle
When I was a child, my parents instilled in me a reverence and respect for books. Books couldn’t be stepped on, sat on, or abused, because they contained something mysterious and powerful, beyond their mere, physical composition: wood fibers and ink. In a magical way, they were carriers of that which was irreplaceable; they housed an intellect, a unique soul. In our home, books were elevated in the hierarchy of objects; in their nature, deemed closer to humans than furniture, knick knacks, clothing, etc. It was these early sentiments that took hold of me when I first encountered the Codex books.
While riding my bike to work each day, dodging debris from the recent Minot flood (and sometimes not dodging and getting flat tires), I came upon these books: out in the open, exposed to the elements, battered by wind and rain. They hung in the trees and were strewn across the landscape. Because of my upbringing, I couldn’t ignore them, and they pulled me into telling their story: a story of necessity, loss, neglect, obsolescence, progress, privilege, excess, ignorance, and valediction.
I’ve now spent over a year with these books: spring, summer, winter, fall, night, day, wind, rain, dust, snow, dew, nests, eggs, webs, sprouts, sticks, leaves, bulldozers, trains, trucks, duck weed, worms, spiders, birds, muskrats . . .
About Micah Bloom
Micah Bloom is an artist and educator, and he lives in Minot, ND, teaching at Minot State University. Bloom holds an MFA in Painting and Drawing from the University of Iowa and has been selected for numerous artist–in–residence fellowships. His works have been published in literary and art journals, and he has shown work nationally and internationally, including private galleries in China and the Shanghai Museum of Contemporary Art. His multi-media project with ooded books, Codex, has been exhibited around the US. Married for 16 years, Micah and his wife Sara, share four daughters and one son, and they all love to make things.
About The Digital Press at the University of North Dakota
The Digital Press at the University of North Dakota is a collaborative press that works closely with authors and editors to produce innovative academic and popular works. With Micah Bloom’s Codex, the Digital Press presented an ambitious project that spans media (digital text, video, hardcover, and paperback), embraces archaeological sensibilities, and is both universal and profoundly local in its attention to the ood that devastated Minot in 2011. This large format version combines Micah Bloom’s photography with nine new essays inspired by Codex. It is a numbered, limited edition.