Libraries Society of North America 31st Annual Conference
Wyndham Baltimore Inner Harbor, Baltimore, Maryland Ė March 20-26, 2003
Structures and Bookbinding Techniques
Jae Rossman, Yale University
Laurie Whitehill Chong, Rhode Island School of Design
Carol Barton, Book Artist, Curator, and Book Arts Instructor, Glen Echo, MD
Laurie Whitehill Chong
art librarians and visual resources professionals attended this hands-on
workshop taught by book artist Carol Barton.
Participants each constructed models of three simple bookbinding
structures: a three-hole sewn pamphlet stitch binding; an accordion fold binding
with non-adhesive decorated cover boards; and a maze book, folded from a single
sheet of paper.
the book-making portion of the workshop, Laurie presented a selection of
artistsí books from the collections of the Maryland Institute College of Art
Library (loaned by Margie Chenoweth), the Rhode Island School of Design Library,
and samples from her own collection. Participants
were able to see completed examples of the book structures they had just learned
how to make. Many of the books
showed variations on these bindings as well, and gave a good sense of the
different ways that book artists have integrated elements of these structures
with text and image.
next showed several of her artistsí books and explained details of the
research, conceptualizing, planning, and execution challenges of each book.
Among those books shown were Loom;
Instructions for Assembly; Beyond
the Page; Tunnel Map; and Vision
Shifts. Participants were treated to a rare viewing of her latest
book, Five Luminous Towers, a book
that can be read in the dark. This
latest book represents years of research and work, including a Bogliasco
Fellowship for a residency in Italy. It
is a complex pop-up book depicting five famous Italian towers with accompanying
verses describing each tower and its history.
With the drapes drawn and the lights out, each poem was read, and all
watched in amazement as the pages and pop-up towers lit up from a bulb hidden
within the binding. With the lights
back on, Carol showed the inner workings of this engineering feat.
session ended with time for questions and discussions related to making
artistsí books, teaching about them and managing/ preserving collections of
them. Jae and Laurie distributed
sets of handouts; among these were a bibliography on the history of the book and
bookbinding, the history and theory of artistsí books, and the techniques of
book making. Also included were
handouts on paper grain, adhesives, pamphlet stitch binding variations,
instructions for maze books, a list of book arts suppliers, and various book
arts centers and organizations. Participants
left with new tools, new skills, and three small books to bring home.
Bartonís work can be seen at http://www.popularkinetics.com