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Winner of the Dot Moye Memorial Prize
Flag book
8.875″ x 6.75″ x 1.625″

The flag book, florescence, is an artistic representation of living with chronic illness and finding solace in nature. Florescence is defined as the process of blooming. This book represents my symbolic prayers through nature, hoping that I am also undergoing a transformation of healing and blooming like my flowers. Details include hand-cut floral silhouettes, pressed forget-me-nots, and endsheets made of handmade paper with zinnia and snapdragon seeds as inclusions. On the spine side, my poem reads: Some days, the only thing I can manage is to sit in the garden. I take care of my flowers, wishing for them to grow and flourish, hoping as a silent prayer that the universe will take care of me. That same hummingbird often visits — it’s as if the universe speaks. Hush, my child. Let your mind rest. The book is housed in a handmade box which includes a tray to lift the book out, as well as interlocking wooden stands to display the book in its intended floral shape. Displayed in this way, the sculptural quality makes readers shift perspective to view the entire poem. Light is sifted through the silhouettes inside creating a garden of shadows.

– Maddi Bryce Smith, Woodstock, GA


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