Sarah Bryant, “Fairmont Color Card”

Sarah Bryant
Tuscaloosa, AL

Fairmont Color Card
Techniques include: Letterpress printed text from handset Bembo type, textile, and foil blocking. Materials for the enclosure include binders board, Duo Bookcloth, and fabric.
9.5 x 3.5 x 1.75”

Artist Statement

Fairmont Color Card is a contemplation of the roles that color cards and fabric swatches have played in the origin story of landfill culture and planned obsolescence. Text for the project was culled from 1977-1978 Home Furnishing Color Card, produced by The Textile Color Card Association of the United States, Inc. and The Wastemakers, written by Vance Packard in 1960. Designed and produced between 2019 and 2021, the project began in one place and ended in another. Research on color cards was conducted at Yale University Birren Collection of Books on Color in 2019.

This project includes a three-panel sample book and a series of seven collages. Materials for this project include my clothes and bedding, and thread color matched to these textile samples the walls, hair, and skin found in my home. Fairmont Color Card employs brochure structures and production techniques historically used for color cards and sample books, including thread winding, foil blocking, and die cutting.

Produced in an edition of twenty copies, the fabric collages included in this project are all identical across the edition save for one, the card titled “the significance of these private worlds,” which is unique to each copy.

Epigraph: “All fashion ends in excels” –Paul Poiret

Text on back of sample book
“Domestic Gathering: vest, pair of jeans, pink tank, hot weather dress, apron, wedding dress, interview shirt, blue tank, sheets, pajamas, accent colors: hair, skin, walls”

“While the greatest care is exercised in the manufacturing of our color materials, we cannot guarantee or be held responsible for absolute matches in colors, as it is sometimes impossible to avoid slight variations. This may be a happy omen for the future, or become a threat to the serenity of life.”

Titling text for collages:
“We’ve got to keep them busy changing their hats”
“educated & activated amid the conflicting vibrations of sight & sound”
“Alter the proportions of the room.”
“It was becoming increasingly hard to create a burning desire for things.”
“They are optional or luxury items; rearrange them and see how their casts seem to shift”
“a threatened overabundance, the menacing mood of the outside world”
“the significance of these private worlds”

Image List
Image 1: View of complete project with enclosure
Image 2: View of back side of sample book which includes a key to identify the textiles used in the collages
Images 3 & 4: full view of color card collages
Image 5: detail composite image of collages