December 5, 2007

Welcome to the December Newsletter!

A quarterly compendium of news, knowhow and whatnot, appearing online for the very first time. All members of the Guild of Book Workers are welcome and encouraged to post comments.

Sincere thanks to all of you who have come through with news and whatnot. Thanks also to those who have weighed in with comments or expressed interest in contributing to future issues. (Untapped knowhow still at large!) I look forward to seeing how this little enterprise grows and evolves in the future, and to doing what I can to help it along.

Susan Collard

Message From The Chair

Dear Members,

If you are reading this, you are aware of exciting changes afoot in the NW Chapter. Sue Collard has created a user-friendly, real-time way for us to keep in touch. This site will help us share our work, news, and opportunities with each other.

Do you have creative solutions for those pesky bookmaking problems? I still love the article Roberta Lavadour wrote for the Bonefolder called “The Practical Bench”. In it she offered a method of attaching a pegboard to a computer keyboard bracket assembly, creating a moveable wall assembly for quick access when sitting. Brilliant solution! If you have technical tips or just a great idea, let us know!

The gallery is a great way for us to see your recent or in-progress work. Want to pose a question to the chapter? Have you discovered a great product or tool? Here is your chance to share.

This site is also a good way to announce exhibit opportunities or venues.

Another new development is the teaming of Shu-Ju Wang and Katherine Shiver Pomeroy as Workshop Coordinators for the chapter. They are working on ideas for upcoming workshops and would appreciate your input on what you want. Suggestions on workshop presenters are also welcome.

Many thanks to Sue, Shu-Ju and Katherine for volunteering to bring these great developments to our chapter. In the future, I hope we use this site to plan future meetings and elect officers. You may notice that the vice-chair position is open. If you are interested, please contact me.

I wish you a safe and peaceful Holiday Season.

Paula Jull

GBW Northwest Plows Boldly Ahead with Blog Format

I received a number of thoughtful and supportive comments in response to issues raised in the Proto-Newsletter about the public nature of an online publication. Not a single person expressed concern about people outside the GBW having access to the newsletter. Several mentioned the advantages of a public format which could attract readers and potential members. So I will go ahead and get links added to the GBW Northwest newsletter from the national GBW website as well as from our Northwest Chapter website (which is also due for a few other updates).

Comments will be open to all GBW members regardless of chapter affiliation. Again, I didn’t get any feedback at all that recommended jealously guarding this as a Northwest Chapter member privilege. One or two suggested it would be nice to have an additional perk beside the newsletter which was received by chapter members only. I like this idea too, if someone else wants to run with it.

In celebration of the power of the written word to provoke, energize and sustain, I'll close this post with an image of one of Workshop Coordinator Shu-Ju Wang's more offbeat creations:

Puff pastries gocco-printed with a mixture of hershey syrup and sour cream, ready to be served with lemon curd. Text: Question? Pause, Full stop. Bang! and #!@!%)!! (or something similar).

A Quick How-To on Posting Comments

First the sermon on "why":

The GBW Northwest is very much a work in progress, and like any sprawling social endeavor (junior high school dances come to mind) there is bound to be a little awkwardness at first about what one does, why should one bother, and who might be watching. Though the interactive aspect of a blog format may be new to many of you, I encourage you to try it out. Comments are an easy way to encourage other members who have taken time to write an article or share their work with the group. (They're out there on the dance floor! Be nice to them!) If what you see raises questions, sparks ideas, reminds you of something, or just delights you, let them know. They'll be happy to hear from you. We'll be interested in what you have to say. And your participation will make the communication even easier next time, both for you and for everyone else.

Now here's the promised "how-to":

To read or post comments, just click on "COMMENTS" at the bottom of each section to view the pop-up window. To add a comment, type or paste your comment in the box. Underneath it will tell you "Choose an identity." Always good advice! You just need to sign your comment with your full name. You can do this by selecting "Other." Or, if you are signed on to a Google/Blogger account already, you might need to select "Nickname" to use your full name. Then press "Publish Your Comment." Since comment moderation is in place, your comment will not appear immediately, but you will get a reassuring message that it's been received.

Please don't try to publish an anonymous comment. As comment moderator, my role is a little like the chaperone of a school dance, who is there in the unlikely event that unruly hooligans try to crash the party. (And no, I won't be policing the girls' room! Enough of this confounded metaphor!)

For Those with Older Computers. . .

Here’s a question for you: IS WHAT I SEE WHAT YOU GET? I received a very polite e-mail from a member who had viewed the Proto-Newsletter on an old Macintosh, suggesting that if all the newsletter text was going to be grey-on-cream, perhaps I should at least refrain from capitalizing everything, as it was quite hard to read. Apparently, some older Macs running OS 9 may not recognize the Blogger formatting codes properly. I’m hoping this affects very very few of you! To confirm: this section should have a large orange headline. The text should be black with both upper and lower case. I am not trying to conduct experiments in optical torture. In all likelihood this isn't going to be an issue at all for the vast majority of you. But if your computer is having formatting problems, please let me know.

Member News and Gallery

Fruma Shrensel
Seattle, Washington

be the change

Based on a quote from MK Gandhi, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” The book opens with a violent war-like image, and transforms into a vision of serenity, compassion and peace.

I was motivated to complete this book after becoming increasingly frustrated with the constant barrage of bad news concerning the war in Iraq, the spread of terrorism around the world, and the abundance of greed and fraud in “high places” here at home. I have turned off my radio and avoid news stories of human misery and evil. Instead of throwing up my hands in frustration and adding my grievances to the flourishing negativity, this book is an attempt to be a conduit for peace and compassion. I can think peace, speak peace and be peace, no matter how imperfectly. I have the power to change myself.

Finished size: 5.2 x 7.75”• portfolio-style cover, crafted from Canson Mi Teintes paper. • book is a flexagram, which is constructed to rotate when flexed, to reveal four individual faces.
• illustrations were created using Adobe Photoshop and printed with digital technology on an Indigo press, using acid-free, recycled, Classic Crest paper. I hope the affordable format, (retail price is $18.00), will help to spread the message in a pleasing and palatable way.

Joanne Kluba
St. Louis, Missouri

Blinded by Science

These are images of my “Blinded By Science” books, just completed this month. I have been experimenting with painting on book cloth. I made 6 copies of the book. All are original calligraphy on chiri paper with collage elements. It is a 7 folio signature in a pamphlet style binding, approximate size 8” x 8” x 1/2”.

Elsi Vassdal Ellis
EVE Press
Bellingham, Washington

Elsi Vassdal Ellis was one of twenty participants selected to participate in the Boston University School of Theology Institute for Culture,Religion and World Affairs (CURA) intensive summer seminar on religion and globalization, June 3-15, 2007. She was selected to give the Third Annual Lectureship of the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi, Chapter 250 on October 25. Her presentation, "Crossroad: A Book Artist Turns Left on the Moral Map," focused upon her approach to creating artists' books and specifically introduced a new series of books she is currently working on examining the many definitions and interpretations of "evil." The presentation also included an exhibit of her work. She received a $5,000 Summer Research Grant from Western Washington University in support of this new work.

a test image for the "good" and "evil" of globalization using a comment made by Peter Berger, director of CURA, regarding Wal-Mart in Mexico

She also contributed a folio for the Center for Book Arts limited edition "The Vandercook Book." Title page and third page of the eight-page folio are pictured below:

Elsi's book "Icarus" was selected by Maria Pisano for an exhibit in the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Special Collections, "Books and Death: Book Artists' Constructions of Death, Mourning, and Memory." The exhibit ran from September 15 to November 30, 2007. She is also currently exhibiting new work in "The Art of the Book, 2007," The Gallery, Bainbridge Island, Washington.

Paula Jull
Pocatello, Idaho

A Perfect Day

In February of 2007, four friends drove to Lees Ferry, Arizona, in search of warm sun and perhaps, a sighting of California condors. They were rewarded with more than expected. The red Vermillion Cliffs and its canyons revitalized their souls after a long winter, and the condors were everywhere.

The prints in this book were inspired by that weekend, as is the text.

The prints were relief printed on linoleum blocks with stencils and multiple inkings with water-based Akua Intaglio ink. The text, set in Bernhard Modern, was printed on Somerset drawing paper with a Xerox Phaser 7760 laser printer. All other coloring is hand-applied with pigment pad pochoir and watercolor. Text and imagery by Paula Jull. Unique copy.

Work in progress

This book has a wide format to accommodate a large print. I am working on an alternative format for an editioned, laser printed version.

NW Book Arts List

I’m guessing most of you already know about and subscribe to the NW Book Arts List, but I find it such a handy source of information that I will mention it here. It’s an e-mail listserv set up in Yahoo Groups, and you will have to register with a Yahoo ID first if you don’t already have one, but it's a pretty painless process.

Much of the info I'm posting here on upcoming events has arrived at my desk via this list: I've just fished it out of the stream and maybe tidied it up a bit. I find there's plenty of inadvertent crosstalk and posts I'm not interested in, but not so many it gets annoying. It's fun and often very useful to have a window into what's going on, to know what workshops are happening in British Columbia, who's getting rid of an old press, etc.

December 3, 2007

Book Arts Shows

2007 has been a banner year for book arts shows in the Northwest, with many chapter members taking part in shows such as Gadzooks! Amazing Books by Northwest Artists at Maryhill Museum and The Art of the Book: 2007 at Bainbridge Arts and Crafts. Here in Portland there were strong book arts shows at the New American Art Union and 23 Sandy Gallery, as well as the Focus on Book Arts Faculty and Staff Show.

An Oregon/Minnesota Artists’ Book Exchange took place, with work from Oregon displayed at the Minnesota Center for Book Arts in the summer and work from Minnesota displayed at Lane Community College in the fall. I made it to Eugene to check out what our Midwestern compatriots were up to, and was duly impressed.

Here are a couple of upcoming Northwest book arts shows to brighten the dreary winter months ahead. If you know about one I've missed, please let me know, or feel free to post info in the form of a comment.

The Illustrated Word - An Exhibit of Letterpress Broadsides
Maude Kerns Art Center, Eugene, Oregon
January 11-February 8, 2008
Gallery hours: M-F 10:00 am-5:30 pm, Sat noon-4:00 pm

The Cannon Gallery of Art
Western Oregon University, Monmouth, Oregon
February 2-March 21, 2008
See Calls for Entries for description.
Gallery hours: M–F 8:00 am – 5:00 pm and by appointment

And, though it's further afield, I'm sending books out to:

Outrageous Pages: Ingenious Artists' Books
The Art Gallery
SUNY College at Oneonta, New York
January 21-March 7, 2007

Calls For Entries

IT’S NOT TOO SOON to start thinking about the 2009-10 Guild of Bookworkers traveling exhibition, Marking Time. A call for entries will be available online next summer, with digital images due for jury in early 2009. The show will open at the Minnesota Center for Book Arts in May 2009, concurrent with the Fellowship of American Bibliophilic Societies symposium. “Time has long captured the imagination of artists, writers, scientists, philosophers and theologians,” writes Karen Hanmer, Exhibitions Chair. “Members are invited to interpret “Marking Time” as broadly or narrowly as they wish. Possibilities might include but are not limited to: a specific incident in or period of history, the future, science fiction, time as a scientific or spiritual concept, the measurement of time, current events or the role of time in one’s own life.”

A few other deadlines for upcoming group shows:

The Cannon Gallery of Art
Western Oregon University, Monmouth, Oregon
February 2-March 21, 2008

A national juried exhibition open to 2- and 3-dimensional art as well as time-based media. Unbound will explore the boundaries of artist books in contemporary art.

Slides or digital photos and entry form must be postmarked December 28, 2007.
$20 entry fee for up to three submissions. All work submitted must have been completed within the last two years. Juried by Inge Bruggeman of INK-A! Press, Portland. Download submission guidelines and entry form. If you have questions please contact Paula Booth, Gallery Director, at, (503) 838-8607.

Abecedarian Gallery, Denver, Colorado
March 1-29, 2008

A national juried show of hand-made artist books and hand-pulled prints that utilize photographic imagery.

Open to handcrafted books created as either edition or one-of-a-kind and traditional prints that utilize photographic imagery. Artist books, sculptural books, book objects, photo-litho, -intaglio, -silkscreen, -gravure, cyanotype, Vandyke prints, gum-bichromate, kwik-prints or mixed-media prints are encouraged as long as photographic imagery is a primary element.

Book submissions will be juried by Chicago book artist Karen Hanmer. Print submissions will be juried by Greg Cradick, director of Working With Artists & Flash Gallery, Lakewood, Colorado. (Abecedarian Gallery was recently opened by GBW Treasurer Alicia Bailey.)

Submissions must be received at the gallery by January 20, 2008.
Send an email request to for prospectus or request a printed prospectus and entry form by sending #10SASE to Abecedarian, PO Box 200984, Denver, CO 80220

Secrets and Lies
A Juried Exhibition of Contemporary Artist Books
23 Sandy Gallery, Portland, Oregon
March 20 – April 26, 2008

A national juried show of hand-made artist books exploring our innermost secrets, lies, hopes, fears and wildest confessions. Real or fiction. Storytelling or confessing. Raw and revealing or coy and concealing. This show is open to a wide interpretation of the theme. Make us laugh, make us cry, maybe even make us squirm a little. Have fun. Play. Truth or fiction. Truth or dare. Come explore the magical world of artist books.

This exhibit is open to book arts related artworks created as either edition or one-of-a-kind. Artist books, sculptural books, book objects, zines or broadsides are encouraged. Any medium, any style. This exhibit will be juried by Gay Walker who is the Special Collections Librarian at Reed College Library in Portland, which houses a significant collection of artists books. A purchase prize will be awarded and donated to the collection at Reed.

Submissions must be received at the gallery by February 21, 2008.

$20 entry fee for up to three artworks; all work must be for sale. Download a PDF prospectus and entry form.

Again, if there's a call for entries out there I've missed, feel free to let me know or post info in a comment.

December 2, 2007


And with that, you've reached THE END of the December Newsletter. Have a great winter! Come again soon! Visit the links. Boldly leave a comment. Check back to see if others are boldly leaving comments. And consider contributing to the March newsletter, which will have a deadline at the tail end of February. . .