It has been over a year since my last post, my apologies. A few things on the home front have complicated life in the studio tremendously since last spring.
But – I’m back. And there’s a few things I’d like to catch you up on.
First up, I will once again be in New York next month for the FPBA Manhattan Fine Press Book Fair on April 9th. It will be held at the Church of St. Vincent Ferrer across the way from the New York Antiquarian Book Fair at the Park Avenue Armory. With luck, the new Kafka book, The Hunter Gracchus, will be completed and ready for viewing. All of the text is composed, corrected and ready to go in galleys, the paper is here, cover materials and presentation pretty well set. Just something funny about being an artist sometimes and the work doesn’t flow – I am not yet content with my intaglio prints that illustrate Gracchus and I won’t release the book until I am. That’s about it unfortunately.
I have a few small treasures to bring along regardless, a very small book by Robert Frost, Christmas Trees, which is a 100th anniversary printing of the title and a few small broadsides with artwork.
An exciting forthcoming project is a new collaboration with my old partner James Dissette which will come out under our Chester River Press imprint. Moon as Bright as Water is a newly translated body of poems by Qin Guan dating from the 11th century Chinese Northern Song dynasty. Never before published, this translation is by William McNaughton and David Young with a foreword by William McNaughton. Jim and I first started talking about this project over 1o years ago and sometimes things just take a little longer to perk their way into existence. Look for it this summer as we are now doing page layouts with the final text editing completed now. Here is an early prototype of the title page for your amusement:
I’ve also been busy here close to home, a collaboration with Blackbird Arts in Traverse City to create a new book arts center in Northern Michigan – Blackbird Book Arts & Press. Work began last fall with planning and moving presses into the space and I am pleased that our initial offerings have been a huge success. The space includes facilities for letterpress, intaglio, silk screen and workspace for bindery activities. Things will ramp up this summer with a variety of workshops and classes given by myself and other talented practitioners of the “black arts” from across the country.
I have been honored with being given one of the 2016 Michigan Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Awards. The grant is administered by Michigan State University Museum’s Michigan Traditional Arts Program. It was established with the support of the National Endowment for the Arts and is sustained through a partnership with the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs. This years current apprentice is Daniel Schneider who started working with me last September. Some of you may have met him at the last couple Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum Wayzgooses where he has presented his research on worker skill and industrial wood type production.
More to come soon. Would love to “wow” you with something new in the next month.