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Cosmic Surgery is a photo book, set in the not too distant future where the world of cosmetic surgery is about to be transformed
Cosmic Surgery is a photo book, set in the not too distant future where the world of cosmetic surgery is about to be transformed
Cosmic Surgery is a photo book, set in the not too distant future where the world of cosmetic surgery is about to be transformed
329 backers pledged £22,318 to help bring this project to life.

About

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£22,318

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Cosmic Surgery is a photography project by Alma Haser in which the faces of the subjects she photographs are transformed into something unrecognisable. This book documents the results.

Cosmic Surgery started back in 2011 when Alma would construct origami shapes to attach to her own face, hiding or disguising her identity in a series of self-portraits. Friends and other willing participants eventually became the subjects, having intricate origami structures made from their faces. Each portrait is printed, sometimes numerous times, and folded into complicated origami shapes that are then placed over their original face. The combined assembly is then re-photographed creating unsettling results.

Last year a very limited run of 10 books were produced by hand. This Kickstarter is to help make the second edition happen.

A spread from the first edition
A spread from the first edition
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 THE BOOK

In the process of producing the first limited edition pop-up book, science writer Piers Bizony and designer Emily Macaulay joined the Cosmic Surgery team to help introduce a narrative background, layout and unique construction. This second edition wants to expand on those ideas. It will be a photo book set in a fictional, not too distant future, at a point where “intelligent materials” are just about to transform the world of cosmetic surgery.

The book will have a hardcover printed and foil embossed. It will be 190x240mm (slightly smaller than A4) and contain 48 pages filled with the original portraits and a few new ones that haven’t been displayed before. There will also be a number of smaller booklets inside, containing the written content. And finally the book will include a pop-up portrait and a folded one which will be attached in the UK by our trusted team of pop-up makers, meaning this book has all the care and attention to detail that went in to first 10. We will be limiting this edition to 500 copies.

Book Cover
Book Cover
Page example from second edition
Page example from second edition
Page example from the second edition
Page example from the second edition

WHO IS INVOLVED?

Alma Haser – The creator and Photographer of Cosmic Surgery.

Emily Macaulay (Stanley James Press) – The designer of the book. She has worked alongside Alma to get this project off the ground and has been involved ever since Alma asked her if she was interested in helping her create a unique photography pop-up book.

Piers Bizony – A famous science writer and the person who gave this photography series a story. Without his imagination and experience in science writing it would not have been the same. 

And of course all the beautiful 'patients' that have allowed themselves to be photographed and have their faces folded into unrecognisable new ones.

Alma hard at work finishing off the last of the Cosmic Surgery Portraits.
Alma hard at work finishing off the last of the Cosmic Surgery Portraits.
'Patient no. 16' Print
'Patient no. 16' Print

HOW WILL THE FUNDS BE USED?

Making a book doesn't have to cost £20,000.

When the 1st edition was released our main goal was to release a pop-up photo book that didn’t cost the earth. All the advice we were given in those early days was to ship the designs off to China where a book could be made inexpensively and in massive runs. Pop-up books are still made by hand, each pop-up stuck in by someone's hands. We decided early on that we wouldn’t be able to guarantee good working conditions for all the people involved if we sent the work halfway round the world.

So all in all this is not a cheap book to make. The funding will cover the printing and binding of the book here in the EU, we haven’t chosen the cheapest printers, we’ve chosen someone we can trust. It also covers the cost of our trusted pop-up team back in the UK who will attach the pop-up sections before packaging them and sending them on their way to all you lovely backers.

And finally it also includes some money for the people involved in the design, the story and making these books happen along the way.

Postcard Pack
Postcard Pack
Using magazines with the 'Fold your face' instruction pack
Using magazines with the 'Fold your face' instruction pack

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO MAKE A BOOK?

The book design is almost finished, we are just finalising the tiny details. The book will be ready to print as the Kickstarter ends. We are currently talking to two printers based in Europe and haven’t made up our mind which one to use yet, one is based in Belgium, the other in Germany.

If this Kickstarter campaign is successful then sometime in late April we should be making a trip to see the printers just as the first pages come off the press. The finished books will then be shipped to us sometime in mid June, where our pop-up team will fold and stick 500 pop-ups into 500 books, which is definitely not going to be easy! So if you have pledged you can expect to receive a beautiful, hand finished book by early to mid July.

Whilst we wait for the printers to do their thing we will also have time to work our way through the other rewards, running workshops, taking original origami portraits and posting postcards and prints to their lucky recipients.

CREDITS

Here are some other great people that helped us along the way…

Josh Emerson helped us build the Cosmic Surgery Simulator. Taking a crazy idea me and Emily had and made it happen.

Ali Graham helped us produce the Kickstarter video.

Simon James let us use his music in the Kickstarter video. We also have plans to collaborate with him again in the future of this project.

If you would like to talk about our project and Kickstarter campaign on your website the press kit below contains some bits you may need. If you find yourself needing more images or interviews then please send an email to alma@haser.org

Risks and challenges

There really aren’t that many risks involved. Emily has had books produced in Europe before so understands the challenges involved in that process. I have an exhibition opening at The Photographers' Gallery which starts on the 7th of July so I will be eager to have all the books ready by then. This means there is a fixed deadline for when things should be done by so I wouldn’t expect any severe delays. That being said if we miss our postage goal by a week or two please please don’t hate us for it.

We massively appreciate the support of you, the backers. We will be doing everything we can to make this book, or any of the other pledges an amazing experience for you.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £1 or more About $1.39

    If you are intrigued and just want to support this project and book.

    THANK YOU!

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    Pledge £6 or more About $8

    Pack of 5 postcards - images from the Cosmic Surgery series.

    Includes UK postage

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    30 backers
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    Pledge £8 or more About $11

    ORIGAMI INSTRUCTION PACK -
    'FOLD YOUR FACE.'

    Two diagrams that show you how you can fold your own photographs into origami structures.

    Also includes 1 print to fold.

    (includes UK postage.)

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    Pledge £25 or more About $35

    ‘EARLYBIRD’ COSMIC SURGERY BOOK

    You will be the first to receive a copy of the book at this special ‘earlybird’ price. Limited to the first 100 copies.

    Includes UK postage

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    Reward no longer available 100 backers
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge £30 or more About $42

    COSMIC SURGERY BOOK

    You will be the first to receive a copy of the book at the special price of £30. The book will be sold for £35 in shops when released in July.

    Includes UK postage

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge £35 or more About $49

    SIGNED COPY OF COSMIC SURGERY

    You will be the first to receive a copy of the book including a signature by the photographer Alma Haser

    Includes UK postage

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    83 backers
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge £100 or more About $139

    THE COSMIC SURGERY WORKSHOP

    A 1/2 day workshop with Alma Haser and Emily Macaulay being taught how to make your very own Cosmic Surgery portrait using one of your own photos.

    Includes one copy of the book.

    South East venue to be confirmed.

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    Limited 3 backers
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge £150 or more About $209

    SPECIAL EDITION COSMIC SURGERY BOOK

    A copy of the Cosmic Surgery book signed and editioned by the artist. This boxed version also includes a separate handmade pop-up which is not featured in the book and a ‘recovery kit’.

    You will also receive an invite to the book launch as well as the option of having your name in the back of the book as a thank you.

    Includes UK postage

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  9. Reward no longer available

    Pledge £250 or more About $348

    SIGNED ARTIST PROOF - 1ST EDITION

    We have 3 artist proofs of the 1st edition. These books are signed by the photographer and limited to the last 3 copies. The 1st edition has completely sold out so these are the very last copies.

    You will also receive the new edition + invite to the book launch, as well as the option of having your name in the back of the book as a thank you.

    Includes UK postage

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    Reward no longer available 3 backers
    £
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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge £650 or more About $906

    'PATIENT NO. 16’ PRINT

    60x60cm Fine Art Print on Fine Art Felt 310gsm Paper. Edition of 10.

    This is a newly released print available in the Cosmic Surgery print series.

    Also includes a signed copy of the Cosmic Surgery book, an invite to the book launch and the option of having your name in the back of the book as a thank you.

    Includes UK postage

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  11. Select this reward

    Pledge £1,000 or more About $1,394

    An appointment card for your own Cosmic Surgery.

    Have your portrait taken by Alma Haser and then your face folded into a new un-recognisable version of yourself. You will then receive your own finished Cosmic Surgery print and signed book.

    You will also receive an invite to the book launch as well as the option of having your name in the back of the book as a thank you.

    Only 3 places available for this one!

    This reward is available for UK residents only (or people willing to travel to the UK...)

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Funding period

- (28 days)