Shaped with love: Book sculpture and art by BookBW

BookBW I have always loved the unique you-can-find-no-where-else products on Etsy, and one day when I was browsing through the different shops, trying out different searches, I came across the Etsy shop of Benjamin Wieler, a local Toronto artist who works with vintage books to produce works of art from origami shapes made from a book’s pages to framed pages that have been manipulated into beautiful conversation pieces to hang on the wall.

Last summer, I fell so in love with his creativity that I couldn’t help myself—I had to make an order. I ended up purchasing a combination of two things featuring my favourite book War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy.


bookbw art featuring a page from War and Peace with a heart surrounding the word loveThe first piece of art is an original paper collage using recycled paper from a vintage book, which in this case is from War and Peace. It is a black and white drawing of a heart that deliberately surrounds the word “love,” which is pulled from a major scene in the book. This one happens to be when Nikolai is musing on his love for Sonya after a confrontation with his mother, who wishes him to transfer his emotions elsewhere for the sake of a more profitable match (how dreadfully selfish of her, am I right?!). Frankly, I love Nikolai and Sonya, and despite knowing they don’t end up together, I still root for them. On that train of thought, Benjamin is very considerate of what scene you want for your piece of art. If, like me, you choose to have a custom made piece then he involves you in deciding what scene you would prefer to have permanently encapsulated in your frame. I absolutely love how it turned out, perfectly tailored to me and my book lover needs!

Image of books on a shelfThe other piece I purchased was not only for interest’s sake, but it was also a great way to make sure War and Peace wasn’t just thrown away with one page missing. Instead, I was able to use the book to its utmost potential and create a beautiful set of book art to display in my apartment. This beautiful addition was a book safe—and let me tell you, it is a lot nicer than those cheap fake plastic “book safes” you can purchase at Michaels or the Dollar
image of a book safe hiding a chocolate barStore. Benjamin literally and painstakingly cuts the pages out of the book to create a lovely little hiding place for whatever your heart desires! For me that would be the chocolate bar I want to keep hidden from my ravenous boyfriend when he comes to visit! Shh.

IMG_20140402_214638Now these were the only two literary-inspired pieces I bought, however, I was delighted to find a surprise waiting for me when my package was delivered. Delicately wrapped, I found a beautiful hanging ornament made by intricately folding book pages. Can you just imagine having a dozen of these beauties and decorating an entire Christmas tree with them or hanging them in your window?

If you find these works of art as beautiful as I do then you should check out Benjamin Wieler’s Etsy shop, featuring many great book art and sculpture pieces you can purchase, or feel free to contact him personally like I did and get something designed with just you in mind. He also has a Facebook page and a blog.



2 thoughts on “Shaped with love: Book sculpture and art by BookBW

  1. Thanks so much for your kind words & patience for this project. B-)

    …and I just finally got to see an old movie version of War & Peace with Audrey Hepburn & Henry Fonda – spoiler alert, not as good as the book!

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