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VT Book Arts Guild “MailB.A.G.” March 2017

2017 March 1

Next Meeting: Wednesday, March 8, 2017, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

We meet at the Unitarian Universalist Society Church located at 152 Pearl Street in Burlington, VT. We will be in the Sophia Fahs Community Room, a large room located in the basement. Click here for more information on directions/parking.

Handmade leather journalProgram: Mini Leather Journals with Elissa Campbell

In this hands-on presentation, Elissa will teach you Keith Smith‘s Diagonal T’s binding, using soft leather for the cover. This three signature binding creates a lovely decorative pattern on the spine. The book also has an integrated closure that coordinates with the sewing.

Leather, paper and thread will be provided. Please bring the following with you to the workshop:

  • Bone folder
  • Awl
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Bookbinding or tapestry needle

Optional (for punching small holes in leather):

  • Japanese screw punch
  • Eyelet hole punch
  • Leather hole punch

February Meeting Reflections

Book Arts Guild of Vermont meetingWe packed the meeting hall that night, and spent a lovely evening running from station to station, trying out new techniques for getting images onto paper.

There were demos of packing tape image transfer, wood block printing, textural printing using ink and paint, stamping, and foam molding. Everyone dove in to experience as much as they could, and we all came away with new ideas and skills.

Thanks everyone for sharing and preparing, and we look forward to seeing your prints for exchanging at the next meeting.

You can view images from the meeting on the B.A.G. blog.

B.A.G. News

*** Join the Book Arts Guild of Vermont for a two-part printmaking / bookmaking challenge!

Here’s how it will work:

  1. Create an edition of 12-16, 6″ x 6″ prints at home; paper and techniques are up to you. Please sign your work on the front and include a title if you have one.
  2. Bring those prints to the March meeting to exchange with other members.
  3. Everyone participating will give away 11-15 prints (you keep one for yourself) and receive 11-15 new prints in return.
  4. Make a book incorporating the 12-16, 6″ x 6″ prints.
  5. Completed books will be shared at the May B.A.G. meeting.

If you are unable to join us for the March meeting, please mail 11-15 of your prints with a self-addressed and stamped return envelope by March 8th to Ann Joppe-Mercure at 10 Brookwood Drive, South Burlington, VT 05403.

After the March B.A.G. meeting, Ann will mail you your exchanged prints.

Book Arts Guild of Vermont exhibit*** Announcing the Book Arts Guild of Vermont’s Annual Book Arts Show!

Our show for this year will be at SEABA on Pine Street in Burlington, during the months of July and August. This venue gives us a great exhibit space and a lot of exposure to the community.

Important dates:

  • Submission deadline: June 14, 2017
  • Reception: First Friday, July 7, 2017

Members and friends are invited to submit up to 3 pieces.

If you need some inspiration, you may use a loosely defined theme of Correspondence as a stepping off place. All work is welcome, though, so no need to fret about the ‘theme’.

Shoe postcard by Marcia Vogler*** B.A.G. member Marcia Vogler will be teaching a workshop at the Generator, Collage Garage: Art Among Friends, on March 9, from 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. The evening will start with a discussion and demonstration of techniques and materials, and then provide open work time to explore collage and visual meaning. Expect to take home 2-3 collage pieces.

For more information or to register, please visit the Generator website.

Altered book*** Axel’s Frame Shop and Gallery in Waterbury is hosting an exhibit, The Book as Art, co-curated by B.A.G. member Marilyn Gillis. Artists included in the exhibit are B.A.G. members Elissa Campbell, Marilyn Gillis, Penne Tompkins, Ann Joppe-Mercure, Rebecca Boardman, Vera Ryersbach, Judy Sgantas, and Marcia Vogler.

An artist reception will take place on March 10th from 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. Axel’s is located at 5 Stowe Street.

*** B.A.G. member Marilyn Gillis‘ work is featured this month at Creative Space Gallery in Vergennes, through March 12, 2017. The show, A Visual Record: Recent Work by Marilyn Gillis, includes Marilyn’s fiber art, mixed media, and book sculptures.

For more information, please visit Creative Space Gallery’s website.

*** Issue #3 of the Vermont Art Guide includes an article about the Book Arts Guild of Vermont, Making of the Book. Written by Cynthia Close, the article highlights the work of B.A.G. members Nancy Stone, Jill Abilock, and Nina Gaby.

The magazine is available for purchase online.

Book Arts News

Girl Scout Book Artist Cadette badge*** The New England Chapter of the Guild of Book Workers is looking for volunteers for an upcoming Girl Scout event. They will be partnering with the Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts offering programs for Cadette scouts (age 11-14) to earn a Book Artist badge. In addition, they will run a program for younger scouts.

The event will be held on Saturday March 25, 2017 at Camp Cedar Hill in Waltham, MA. They will run a 3-hour program for Cadettes in the morning from 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. and then have a 2-hour program for younger girls from 1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. You can volunteer for just one program or make a day out of it and do both!

There will be an introduction and then five stations that the girls will rotate through which may include printing, accordion folds, a pamphlet, origami book, a scroll, decorating paper or a collaborative book, depending on the interests of the volunteers. Each rotation will last for about 30 minutes. The younger girls will have similar programming in a shorter time frame with only four rotations. If you have a book arts technique or project that you’d like to see done with the Girl Scouts please make some suggestions.

You do not need to be a member of the NEGBW to volunteer. If you would like to volunteer, please contact Todd Pattison at

*** On Thursday, March 9th, the North Bennet Street School is presenting a free lecture with Radha PandeyIslamic World Papermaking.

The talk explores traditional Islamic-world papermaking history and technique, with a focus on contemporary practices in India. The Kagzi family is used as a case study to illuminate the introduction of papermaking in India and how it changed under British rule. The talk will also briefly cover how papermaking affected printing, publishing and literacy, and why it is relevant today.

Please register in advance as space is limited.

*** Now through April 30, 2017, the Kate Cheney Chappell 83 Center for Book Arts is hosting the exhibit Bookbinding and the Pursuit of the Human Touch: The Work of Gray Parrot, curated by Britta Konau.

Gray Parrot began learning the ancient craft of bookbinding in 1971, in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, under Master Bookbinder Arno Werner, who trained several generations of U.S. binders. While there, Mr. Parrot absorbed Mr. Werner’s work ethic and his appreciation and knowledge of time-honored materials and techniques, which to this day have directed the course of his career. After studying fine finishing techniques at the Legatoria Artistica in Ascona, Switzerland, he opened his own bindery in 1973. Except for an 8-year interlude in Massachusetts, Mr. Parrot has worked from his home in Hancock, Maine.

During the past 43 years, Mr. Parrot has been commissioned to create edition bindings for numerous private presses, including Leonard Baskin’s Gehenna Press, Dard Hunter’s Mountain House Press, Henry Morris’ Bird & Bull press, and the Khelcom/New York press of Peter Bogardus. In addition, he has produced many fine bindings and housings for rare books, as well as modern rebindings. His work may be found worldwide in major libraries and museums, as well as in many private collections.

The Kate Cheney Chappell 83 Center for Book Arts is located in Portland, Maine. The exhibit is in the UNUM Great Reading Room on the 7th floor of the Albert Brenner Glickman Library.

*** The Currier Museum of Art is currently hosting the exhibit Deep Cuts: Contemporary Paper Cutting. The exhibit, open through May 21st, showcases work by contemporary artists who reconsider, redefine and even subvert the centuries-old practice of paper cutting.

In the tradition of the craft, the art featured in the exhibition is impressive and intricate, but its subject matter is updated for the 21st century. Addressing deeper personal or social themes, the work touches upon complex reference points including the various cultural, economic and environmental associations imbued in the humble medium of paper.

The Currier Museum of Art is located at 150 Ash Street in Manchester, NH. For more information, please call (603) 669-6144.

Book Arts Classes

Dos-à-dos binding by Elissa Campbell*** B.A.G. member Elissa Campbell is teaching Do the Dos-à-dos at Studio Place Arts in Barre, VT on March 16 & 23 from 4:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

The dos-à-dos (translated from the French, “back-to-back”), is a book structure in which two separate texts are bound together so that they share a central back cover. The two books open in opposite directions. This binding offers many creative possibilities in that it can be used to physically represent the relationship between two books.

In this workshop, participants will create a 2-sided journal with a double-needle coptic binding, an intricate stitch that will be visible on each of the book spines. Not only is the coptic binding beautiful, but it also allows books to remain flat when opened.

To register, contact SPA via phone (802) 479-7069 or email.

Handmade book by Jacqueline Sullivan*** Masscribes is hosting a workshop with Jacqueline Sullivan, the Sumptuous Surface Collage Book on April 8 and 9, 2017. The workshop will take place at the Sportsman’s Club in Norwood, MA.

This class will be an unhurried exploration of how to develop a rich surface as pages for your books. Through a series of exercises, you’ll use simple materials – mainly paint and gesso. You’ll build layers, starting with mark making and Asemic writing. You’ll add gesso and color then cover and uncover portions of those layers. As you practice simplifying, omitting and adding text as we go, balancing visual activity and quiet, you will discover from within what leads to the best integration of our ideas and feelings. Covering, uncovering, discovering!

Your final project will be a sewn book made from one sheet of watercolor paper. The flaps and folds of this artist book make way for many creative opportunities for cut outs and collage. As you assemble your pages, you will talk about and use the elements of good design as they apply to your books.

For more information, please contact Elissa Barr or Nita Padamsee.

*** On Saturday, April 8th, the Kate Cheney Chappell 83 Center for Book Arts is hosting a workshop with Todd Pattison, The Case for Leather: A “Fairly” Simple Leather-Spine Binding.

Leather can seem a bit intimidating to work with, but in this one-day workshop a simple method will be taught for using leather as a spine covering. Incorporating a technique learned by the instructor in Switzerland in the 1980’s, a variation of a case structure will be made that allows for binding with a leather spine with a minimal amount of paring or shaping.

Covering and decoration of the boards with leather will also be demonstrated. Using the technique with cloth, paper and other materials will also be discussed and demonstrated as time allows.

For more information or to register, please visit USM’s website. If you have any questions please contact Todd Pattison.

*** Axel’s Frame Shop and Gallery is hosting a free Folded Page Book Sculptures workshop on Saturday, March 18th from 4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. Come learn an easy art activity that is fun and very relaxing.

Folded page book sculptures require no materials other than an old book or two – no set-up, no mess, and no clean-up. Your artistic voice shows through in the ways you fold the pages and decorate the sculpture. The finished book sculptures are small enough to decorate many spaces in your home, or they make terrific gifts.

Please bring 1 or 2 medium sized books to work on. This class is appropriate for ages 12+. Space is limited.

To register, please contact the gallery at or call (802) 244-7801. Axel’s is located at 5 Stowe Street.

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