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VT Book Arts Guild “MailB.A.G.” October 2020

2020 October 9

Next Meeting: Wednesday, October 14, 2020, 7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

This month’s meeting will once again be held via Zoom, an online conference program. If you’ve never attended a Zoom meeting before, check out this video – it will go over the basics of how to join a meeting.

Stay safe!

The B.A.G. Board

Program: Virtual Visit to UVM’s Silver Special Collections

Artists' bookAt this month’s B.A.G. meeting, University of Vermont librarian Prudence Doherty will once again host our annual visit to Special Collections, but this time virtually.

Not everyone knows that we have one of the finest collections of artists’ books in the nation, right here in Vermont. Prudence will share books acquired since last March, as well as a selection of books that speak to these challenging times.

If you plan to attend the meeting, please contact Elissa so she can send you the Zoom meeting details.

September Meeting Reflections

Book Arts Guild of Vermont meetingThe program for September allowed Mail Art Challenge participants to share the mail art they received. Being a total mail art junkie, I was thrilled to both receive and send a piece or two, and equally excited to see everyone else’s contributions.

The sharing was really joyous, and I think gave us all a sense of being connected in a new way. Thanks to Ann Joppe-Mercure for suggesting and organizing the challenge, and thanks to all who participated.

I hope that we can do it again, and that we have more participants to share the joy.

B.A.G. News

Handmade photo albumElissa Campbell is teaching the Phabulous Photo Album at Studio Place Arts in Barre, VT on October 17th. This is a “small batch” class that limits enrollment to 3 or 4 students, providing appropriate social distancing for health safety.

In this workshop, you will learn how to create an elegant hard-cover photo album using bookcloth and handmade paper – this is a wonderful keepsake that can hold 4” x 6” photos from your recent vacation or family holiday gathering (or perhaps your pandemic adventures).

Each participant will leave class with a completed photo album and a basic knowledge of bookbinding technique. You will receive a detailed handout and resource list for all materials we use.

No previous experience required – this is a great class for a beginner. You can even bring in your own cover materials to customize your book.

Register online or contact Studio Place Arts at (802) 479-7069.

Book Arts News

*** The Guild of Book Workers is generously offering FREE access to videos of the Standards of Excellence presentations from 1984-1993. Videos can be found at this link.

Enter the code GBW1020 during checkout to reduce the cost of a rental to $0.00. Rentals are available as streaming content for 7 days. This code will expire on October 31, 2020.

For help watching videos on Vimeo, please consult the Vimeo FAQ. For other video related questions, please contact GBW Library Chair, Jay Tanner at

Marcia Vogler binding of Vintage Life*** The New England Chapter of the Guild of Book Workers recently had an online Show and Tell featuring bindings from Uppercase Magazine‘s Encyclopedia of Inspiration.

Todd Pattison talked about the history of the binding project, and detailed how he facilitates distributing the Encyclopedia in sheets to each group of binders. Ten binders shared the books they made for the project, including our own Marcia Vogler!

If you couldn’t watch it live, never fear – you can now watch it on the Guild of Book Workers’ Vimeo page.

*** The Book as Art Exhibit v.8 Infinity is currently on display at the Decatur branch of the Dekalb County Library through October 17th. While viewing the exhibit in-person is limited, you can access the full catalog of the show online.

Held in the hand, a book can be a source of stability in unsettled times. Tactile and olfactory, the black and white pages conjure emotions and images that endure longer than flickering light on small screens. From tablet to folio, papyrus to scroll, song to psalm – all are created as a concept that becomes thought, becomes word, becomes book, becomes sculpture.

These objects, in an increasingly digital world, stubbornly survive. The objects in this exhibition will interpret the concept of the book and invite the viewer to look beyond the printed page to where ideas, words, and symbols are transformed and are transfigurative. They are expressive, expansive and iconic. They have become form, and are infinite.

In addition, there are recordings and live streaming events associated with the show. Check out the Dekatur Arts Alliance website to view past videos. Check out the Georgia Center for the Book‘s Eventbrite page for details on upcoming live Zoom artist talks.

*** Another organization that moved an exhibit online is Designer Bookbinders. Their summer exhibition Art Book Craft (ABC) can be viewed in their online catalog.

ABC showcases some of the finest work in contemporary bookbinding and book arts in the world today. All produced by Fellows and Licentiates of Designer Bookbinders, each bringing their unique interpretation of contemporary bookbinding and book arts to the fore.

We hope ABC will not only be of interest to established, discerning bibliophiles and collectors, reaffirming the allure of the contemporary book as art but also to allow a new, wider audience the opportunity to engage with and delight in unique and exceptional bookbinding and book arts.

For more information about the exhibit, visit Designer Bookbinders website.

*** A Tradition of Generosity: A Lecture on the Wells College Book Arts Center will be presented by Leah Mackin on October 14th.

The Book Arts, as an academic and artistic discipline, relies upon historic study, preservation of materials and equipment, and contemporary documentation and discourse. This lecture will provide a virtual walk-through of the Wells College Book Arts Center programs, history and goals.

Click here to register.

Stay-at-Home Fun

*** Bay Area Book Artists (BABA) is hosting a Virtual Book Arts Jam, now through October 31st. This online celebration of the book arts features speakers, member galleries, and a marketplace where you can purchase goodies from book-related vendors and book artists.

In addition, the members of BABA are offering live online and on-demand classes. Upcoming live classes include:

October 10: Pop-Out Book with Kit Davey
Kit will guide you through the process of making this fun, easy book in just 90 minutes. Each page opens like a flower. When the book is open it takes the shape of a semisphere.

October 14: Making Bookcloth: Tips & Tricks for Best Results with Rhiannon Alpers
Making your own bookcloth is a gateway to the options for your bookmaking with color, texture, pattern, and weight. In this workshop, you’ll be lead through three different ways to create bookcloth from start to finish. We’ll also walk through many samples of finished cloth to discuss the tips and tricks for the best results for different applications.

For more information about the event, visit the BABA website.

*** Book Paper Thread is offering Kakishibu and Washi with Linda Marshall on October 24 & 25. In this workshop, you’ll be working with kakishibu, a granular persimmon dye. You’ll learn how to prepare it using different recipes.

You’ll look at the traditional Japanese uses of washi and kakishibu and discuss how to use those techniques in contemporary ways. You’ll discuss various preparation techniques and how to apply kakishibu to washi. You’ll create samples on a range of Japanese papers for future personal studio reference. Lastly, you’ll learn alternative applications, patterning ideas, and traditional and modern dye techniques.

For more information or to register, visit the Book Paper Thread website.

*** The Dartmouth College Book Arts Workshop has some online offerings this month, including the following:

Wood letterpress typeOctober 19: Hang Out with Letterpress Printer Katherine Ruffin
The Book Arts Workshop will meet with Katherine Ruffin, Director of Book Studies Program and Lecturer in Art at Wellesley College. Katherine has published limited editions under her own imprint of Shinola Press since 1994.

She’ll be sharing views of her studio and work – especially a series of letterpress printed broadsides encouraging voting! That series of posters began in 2008, when Katherine drew inspiration from a case of wood type in her studio and carved linocut stars and stripes letterforms to spell VOTE. The same case of wood type played an important role in a series of prints she made which are portraits of her Universal I Vandercook press.

October 21: Isaac’s Mail Art Extravaganza with Isaac Feldman
Join Book Arts Workshop student assistant, Isaac Feldman ’23 for an exploration of the history of mail art from around the world and some information, ideas, and techniques in how to make your own mail art. You might want to have handy some paper, scissors, tape/glue and a tool for making creases.

For more information about these or other upcoming events, visit the Book Arts Workshop website.

*** BookArtsLA is offering Japanese Binding Duo: Flutter Book and Butterfly Book with Anne Covell on October 18th. These two Japanese bindings are both from the Heian period.

In the Flutter Book, individual sheets are pasted to hinges at the fore-edge and attached to a single cover sheet that wraps around the spine. Because the textblock is only tipped to the cover and not glued at the spine, the pages can easily be blown out by a gentle breeze, giving the book its descriptive name.

In the Butterfly Book, individual sheets are folded and pasted along a narrow strip at the spine. The cover is made in three parts: a decorative spine liner, and two laminated paper covers that are pasted and attached to the first and last pages of the textblock. When open, each pair of leaves joined by paste turns at an angle that resembles the wings of a butterfly.

For more information or to register, visit the BookArtsLA website.

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