United States

2020

Five Oceans in a Teaspoon

Entrant Company

EarSay

Category

Publication

Client's Name

Paper Crown Press

Sub-Category

Book

Five Oceans in a Teaspoon is a book (and multimedia project) written by journalist/poet Dennis J Bernstein, visualized and structured by designer/author Warren Lehrer. A large collection of short visual poems, the 300 page book (Paper Crown Press) sits at the center of a multi-branched project that also includes animations, a traveling exhibition and reading/performances. Design historian Steven Heller wrote the introduction to the book. Divided into eight movements, the book spans a lifetime: growing up confused by dyslexia and a parental gambling addiction; graced by pogo sticks, boxing lessons and a mother’s compassion; becoming a frontline witness to war and its aftermaths, to prison, street life, love and loss, open heart surgery, caring for aging parents and visitations from them after they’re gone. Lehrer selected the poems—out of thousands of Bernstein’s short poems written over 45 years—and arranged them into the book. Each poem lead Lehrer to a typographic composition. The ideas within the poem, its themes, metaphors, allusions, double meanings, ambiguities, subtexts, conflicts, voices, characters, structure, rhythmic cadences, underlying intent—were all grist for the mill. Many of the compositions give form to the interior, emotional underpinnings of the poem. Many compositions engage the reader to become an active participant in the discovery, navigation, puzzle, and interpretation of the poem. Some compositions allude to figuration or landscape, while others work more abstractly. The typographic compositions help create experience—within and across the pages of the book and in 4D within the animations. Hardcover, quarter cloth binding, 6.75” x 6.6” x 300 pages. Full color cover with embossed type, metallic foil. Black and white interior printed on archival paper. All poems are set in the Brix type family. Twenty-seven other typefaces make cameo appearances.

Credits

Design and Typography/EarSay
Warren Lehrer
Poet/Author
Dennis J Bernstein
Editor
Warren Lehrer
Publisher/Paper Crown Press
Matt Barteluce
Printer/Print Art Research Center
Chunwoo Nam
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