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Medicine Dan

By Ayin Es
Los Angeles: Desolate Press, 2024. Edition of 8.

7 5/8 x 6 1/8 x ¾”; 60 pages. Digital color printing and reproductions on Moab Legion Lasal Photo Matte 235gsm and Kayenta 205gsm paper. Signatures wrapped in imported papers of Thai Marbled Mulberry, Thai Mango, Thai Unryu, Lokta Bloom, and Aitoh Japanese paper. Some papers with custom rubber stamping. Two hand-stitched felt pages. Paper pocket of imported Khadi Indian Paper holding colorful stickers of Dan. Bound in 300gsm Gmund-color (Dusty Blue) hand-cut/embroidered cardstock cover. Handbound with a buttonhole binding using waxed linen threads imported from Ireland. Hand-cut silhouette of Dan on front cover with hand-embroidered title through 300gsm Gmund-color cardstock. Closure of special strap garnished with a wild turkey feather. Signed and numbered. Housed in custom 8 1/8 x 6 3/4 x 1 ¼” hinged Plexi Box.

Artist Statement: “’Medicine Dan’ is a story about a special animal who heals. This artist's book focuses exclusively on Dan, a cartoon character invented by Ayin Es. It includes various original sketches in colored pencils, as well as watercolor and ink illustrations.

“ Who is Dan? And where does he come from? Maybe you've noticed that Dan seems indifferent because he is neither smiling nor frowning because his mouth is just a straight line. Still, he seems to bring cheer to those around him anyway. He's magic like that. “Dan only speaks in colors, stripes or Hebrew letters, if at all. He also appears in different colors at times, but his natural color is light yellow ochre. He also likes to eat celery and brownie bits, but not at the same time.

“Dan was born inside a Gimmel machine. Believe it...or not! His first words were the color yellow.

“As the story goes, long before the birth of Dan coming into physical existence, he lived in a parallel universe called Dantasia. He lived there with insects and colors, and things that resembled trees, but once he found out that this parallel land doesn't physically exist, Dan got upset and became a staunch existentialist. He now has many other interests, such as upside down rainbows, roller skating, black holes, flowers, and turpentine. He knows he can't exist on Earth without some amount of turpentine, but he prefers Turpinoid Natural. He is much less smelly that way, not that he would notice since Dan is usually on Xanax.

“Before Dan was born in color, he appeared one day in Ayin Es's pocket sized, moleskin sketchbook. It was when Ayin had been sad for a long while and then suddenly, Dan appeared! At first, it was in a rough manner and his name was very nearly ‘Glen.’ But then a few more waves of the pen, and there he was, exactly as you see him now: Dan - a life-saving, positive character that conquers depression. That's another reason why Dan is magic.”

Medicine Dan

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