Archiving print on paper

Artist Paul Rousso in front of one of his multimedia creations in his show through Sept. 27 at Lanoue Gallery, Boston.

Mr. Rousso has had a fine time using fragments of American commercial and popular culture.

In one of his artist's statements, he wrote:

"That which brought us out of the Dark Ages, the printed word, which also began with the Bible on Gutenberg’s press, is definitely in its final death knell. After hundreds of years of the printed word, ink on paper, is on it’s way out.

"Soon there will be no new magazines, no newspapers, no new books, everyone will have their reader, I-pad etc., to which they can download whatever they want, whenever they want, where ever they are. The last paper and ink to go away will likely be our paper currency. Perhaps the audience for my work is only just being born.''

Yes, the shift to digital will continue but as Anne Mangen and other scientific researchers have found, our understanding and retention of text is considerably higher when we read it on paper than on a screen. Life on a screen is already taking a big bite out of developed thought.

-- Robert Whitcomb