Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Pulp As Portal: Socially Engaged Hand Papermaking and More at Center for Book Arts in NYC

Pulp as Portal: Socially Engaged Hand Papermaking
February 3 – April 8, 2017

As an extension of the broad survey Social Paper, co-curated by Jessica Cochran and Melissa Potter in 2014, Pulp as Portal adds to growing discourse around the contemporary art of hand papermaking as socially engaged art. The exhibition reveals the artist’s book—specifically bookworks, publications, zines and printed matter—as both artwork and outcome: How do hand papermakers today animate the ethos of social engagement, activism, community, and collectivity in the processes they employ to make paper? How are these ideas at play and embodied in the resulting books and printed matter?

As an important emergent genre of the new century, socially engaged art, or, social practice, is broadly characterized by artists’ emphasis on community, democracy, social change, participation and, in the case of hand papermaking, pedagogy. While bookmaking, printmaking and hand papermaking have long been deeply intertwined as creative practices that naturally lend themselves to collaboration, we are seeing more recently the idea of “the collective” purposefully and reflexively embraced and incorporated by hand papermakers beyond the studio, both in process and product. This is manifest specifically through community-based workshops, papermakers’ gardens, grassroots libraries and participatory installations, and it is happening internationally.

Through such platforms, artists can creatively assert, through collaborative craft, the deep relevance of conviviality, skill sharing and the printed word in an increasingly paperless, technology-driven world.

Artists include: Kevin Basl, Book Bombs/Michelle Wilson & Mary Tasillo, Laura Anderson Barbata, Stephanie Barrale and Michael Dunican, Drew Cameron, Combat Paper Projects, Greg Delanty, Megan Diddie, Angela Fegen, Fresh Press at the University of Illinois, Julia Ann Goodman, Megan Heeres, Karen Heft & Alan Govenar, Helen Hiebert, Tatana Kellner, Alison Knowles, Nathan Lewis, Love Positive Women, Margaret Mahan, Drew Matott, Papermaker’s Pack/Jillian Bruschera & Maxum Bruschera, Alva Mooses, Jeffrey Morin, Heidi Neilson & Chris Patrone, Peace Paper, The People’s Paper Co-op/ Mark Strandquist & Courtney Bowles, The Poetry Foundation/Nick Dubois, Melissa Potter, Robert Possehl, Dallas Price, Maggie Puckett, John Risseeuw, Seeds InService, Megan Singleton, Peter & Donna Thomas, and others.

In support of this exhibition the Center will be hosting two free workshops: 
Keeping The Fire Alive – A Collaborative Pulp Printing Discussion with Book Bombs March 4th and Papermake Manhattan with Chicago 77 April 1st. All are welcome to participate, but space is limited to the first 20 registrants. Please register by clicking the links above to the workshop pages.

The following panel discussions relating to hand papermaking, history, activism, and paper's haptic qualities are offered in conjunction with the exhibition.

Paper as Vehicle for History and Memory
Friday March 3, 6:30 pm
Panelists: John Bidwell, Morgan Library curator and printing historian; Donald Farnsworth, Director of Magnolia Editions; Lisa Gitelman, NYU Media historian; and Alexandra Soteriou, Papermaking historian. Moderator: Robbin Ami Silverberg, professor at Pratt Institute and Proprietor of Dobbin Mill.

Paper as Social Practice, Engagement, and Intervention
Friday March 17, 6:30 pm
Panelists: Drew Matott, Handpaper Making and Recovery; John Risseeuw, Professor Emeritus at ASU; Melissa Potter, Pulp Feminism: Radical Social Histories in Hand Papermaking Professor at Columbia College Chicago; and Deborah Tlani Salahu-din, Paper and Social Protest in Baltimore Smithsonian Museum Researcher. Moderator: Jessica Cochran, curator and lecturer at School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and curator of the Center’s Winter 2017 exhibition, Pulp as Portal: Socially Engaged Hand Papermaking.

Paper as Haptic Experience
Friday March 31, 6:30 pm
Paper as Haptic Experience
March 31, 6:30 pm
Panelists: Teresa Jaynes, co-founder and past executive director of Philagrafika; Ruth Lingen, Master Papermaker and Printer, and Director of Pace Paper; Mary Ting, Artist and Professor at CUNY John Jay College; and Robbin Ami Silverberg, Professor at Pratt Institute and papermaker. Moderated by Susan Gosin, founder of Dieu Donné Papermill

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