Tai Snaith
Open Book for the State Library of Victoria

Site Specific

Commissioned | Professional

Why did you make this work:
Open Book was commissioned through an open tender process, my brief was to create a work for the 29m wall of the new entrance to the State Library of Victoria in Melbourne, Australia, through which 4,000 people pass each day. Specifically to make the work relevant for the entrance to the Redmond Barry Collection of non-fiction books (ie. Flora and Fauna, Science, Anthropology, Fashion, etc).

How was the illustration used:
The photographic images were then printed on a giant vinyl decal that spanned the 29 x 9 m wall of the entrance into the library.

How did you make this work:
I worked directly with the books in the collection. I made and found sculptural objects that responded to the open pages of a number of books that appealed to me. Some were about cloud formations, some funghi, tatttoos, plants. There are 13 books in total. I then worked with my phographer Matthew Stanton to create an on-site studio where we shot the images that make up the complete work.

Commissioner Name :
Carolyn Fraser (lead curator)
Commissioner Company :
State Library of Victoria

Social Media:
facebook.com/Tai Snaith Picture Books

Personal Website:

Tai Snaith is a Melbourne based artist and author. She has written and illustrated five picture books published by Thames and Hudson and exhibited her artwork locally and internationally. Her process is often personal and experimental, employing a wide range of materials including ceramics, found objects, cut paper, photography and voice. In 2017 Snaith launched the podcast ‘A World of One’s Own’, originally hosted by ACCA, with the second season funded by The Australia Council for the Arts.