MatchBoox are handmade books folded intricately into a tiny concertina that fits inside a matchbox. Authors including Ramsey Nasr, Abdelkader Benali and Joke van Leeuwen have created short, short stories for their own MatchBoox and artists have transformed their words into beautifully illustrated works of art that tuck snugly inside the box.
Xavier and Emmanuel van Leeuwe are behind this project, which has garnered international attention. The Centre Pompidou and the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris have both acquired the entire MatchBoox collection and these tiny books have been exhibited in galleries and museums and are on sale in bookshops, alongside books that may be bigger, but not as beautiful.
I’m very pleased to have been involved in a newly published MatchBoox project. Italian author Rita Charbonnier wrote a story called ‘Tre giorni indimenticabili’, which I then translated into English as ‘Three Unforgettable Days’ and artist (and author) Marion Bloem then made the story into a beautiful miniature work of art. It’s one of the shorter translations I’ve worked on, but the finished book certainly makes a big impact.
Here’s what Rita had to say (in Italian) about Gli oggetti d’arte “MatchBoox”.