Posts Categorized: News

Spring & Summer Enrollment is OPEN with 23 New Classes & Workshops

This summer, we invite you to explore news ways to make art and be creative. Our calendar includes a wide range of classes for new and experienced printers.

Highlights include a focus on intaglio printmaking with an intermediate class focused on color and multiple-plate registration with Jake Saunders and our first 6-week Photopolymer Intaglio class with the stellar printer, Chris Flynn (of Anchor Graphics fame).

Another exciting addition is a one-day bookbinding workshop just for our comics- and zine- making friends. Bookmaking for Comics & Zines will pair nicely with any Riso 101 workshop.

Browse All Classes & Workshops

*Brand New* Classes & Workshops
Monotypes & Collographs
Polymer & Paper Lithography
Bookmaking for Comics & Zines
Photopolymer Intaglio
Clamshell Box Making Workshop

Introductory 5- to 10-week Classes: No experience needed
Screenprinting Explorations (starts April 14)
Screenprinting Explorations (starts May 1)
Screenprinting Explorations (starts July 7)
Letterpress I: Wood & Metal Type
Printmaking Foundations

One-Day D.I.Y. Workshops:  All levels welcome!
T-Shirts & Totebags Screenprinting Workshop (April 8)
T-Shirts & Totebags Screenprinting Workshop (May 6)
T-Shirts & Totebags Screenprinting Workshop (June 10)
T-Shirts & Totebags Screenprinting Workshop (July 15)
T-Shirts & Totebags Screenprinting Workshop (August 26)
Risography 101 (April 18)
Risography 101 (May 23)
Risography 101 (June 27)
Risography 101 (July 17)
Risography 101 (August 29)
Etching Tester (or Refresher)
Relief Tester (or Refresher)
Botany of Blue: Cyanotypes after Anna Atkins (only offered once per year!)

Intermediate Classes & Workshops
Etching 201: Color
Screenprinting Refresher
Etching Refresher (or Tester)
Relief Refresher (or Tester)
Pre-Press Workshop: File Prep for Stress Free Printing


Browse All Classes & Workshops

Behind the Chili Interview Series: Candor Arts

Candor (pronounced kan-der) is the quality of being open and honest. Candor Arts publishes books about life, learning and healing. Operating on the basis of open and honest communication, the efforts of the organization are rooted in the support of its affiliated authors and collaborators. Specializing in handmade artist book editions, Candor Arts produces a range of design and print projects driven by each artist’s vision.

As a returning chef, we asked Matt Austin if he’d share a little more about their work and, of course, their thoughts on chili.

SP: Candor Arts always seems to be experimenting with economic models that are pushing a more equitable agenda. Was this emphasis on a alternative funding models with a bit of a moral overtone part of the plan from the beginning or something that has evolved out of need or trial and error?

CA: It has certainly been an evolution—I see any current existence of ours as a response to the circumstances we exist within, as well as a culmination of our learning through experience operating as a small institution. I think our model has been built partly in necessity to sustain our work without being so vulnerable to abrupt losses of support, like inconsistent/unlikely grant opportunities or the uncertainty of finding individual donors, and partly in observing the overall lack of financial support and equity for artists in America.

SP: Where did you get your mad bookbinding skills?

CA: A guy named Sage Reynolds on YouTube. He is an excellent teacher, gentle man, and does not require student loans to learn. 😉

SP: Do you have a favorite style of bookbinding? If so, why?

CA: Not necessarily a favorite style, but I think my favorite thing to make is complicated clamshell boxes. I think there’s some kind of madness to it, like you might mess this whole thing up in one small mistake over the course of hundreds of moves made to put it all together.

SP: What book(s) are you reading right now?

CA: An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States by Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz, Five Fifths by Growing Concerns Poetry Collective, 11 poems for addicts/normal people by Justin Nalley.

SP: Can you tell us a little about your newish studio space?

CA: Yes! We have a nice nook in west Logan Square (3520 W Armitage) where we do much of our in-house bookbinding, foil stamping, and some digital printing. We share the space with talented awesome artists April Sheridan, Daniel Mellis, and the boys of Ghost Press: Ryan Troy Ford, Cooper Foszcz, and Josh Davis.

SP: What is the key to great chili?

CA: Consistency.

SP: Name something people should not put in chili, but do all too often.

CA: Too much heat.

SP: Who is one person, living or dead you would have over for chili and why?

CA: Gerhard Steidl, so we can critique the chili in our lab coats.

SP: Do you have a favorite chili story?

CA: True confession: I don’t think anyone will ever top the legacy of Cowboy Mustang Jane’s Flamin’ Hot Freedom Chili from the 2015 Hashbrown Cook-Off, but we will continue to try.

The Hashbrown Show Down:
Spudnik’s Rootin Tootin’ Fair & Chili Cook-Off

Saturday, February 24, 2018
5:00 pm

Reserve Your Tickets


Residency & Fellowship Programs Overhauled to Better Support Artists

On Monday, February 12, Spudnik Press Cooperative announced dramatic overhauls to two of their hallmark programs, the Studio Fellowship and the Residency Program. These two programs have been transformed to each serve a more distinct audience while also building symbiotic relationships across each of these programs.

The Residency Program is now able to supports a broad range of artists, including those working outside of the discipline of printmaking and in communities beyond Chicago. For the first time, the Residency Program is now open to national and international artists in addition to local artists.  To accommodate artists who may not have professional printmaking experience, the production of new work will, based on the technical skills of each resident, take the form of either self-directed use of facilities or a publishing project facilitated by Spudnik Press staff.

Another important shift is that residency period will be condensed but intensified to create a high energy program that integrated the production of innovative and well-executed print-based work with public programming. During one- to six-week residencies, artists will provide the various audiences that Spudnik Press serves, including first-time printmaking students, emerging artists, professional artists, art collectors and supporters, with educational and professional development opportunities.

Learn More about the Residency Program
View the Call for Applications

The benefits of the Fellowship Program are being greatly expanded through the addition of a high-quality results-oriented weekly professional development seminar. Throughout twenty sessions, Fellows will develop the artistic and professional skills needed to build a successful career in the arts. Topics range from self-promotion for artists to artwork documentation to business planning.

Additional program components work in conjunction to provide mentorship, technical training, meaningful interactions with art professionals, public programming experience, and leadership opportunities. For example, each cohort of fellows collaborates to design and present a public program at Spudnik Press Cooperative.

The remodeled program also allows Fellows to apply for a two-month extension to focus solely on completing a body of artwork.

“Our hardest-working fellows are often just discovering new directions or opportunities in their work at the end of their fellowship. They are often unable to continue their new body of work because financial limitations inhibit studio access.”  – Marcela Serment, Program Director

Finally, Fellows receive discounted registration for all Member Professional Practices Programs. In 2018, this collection of opportunities includes four portfolio reviews with curators and seven off-site visits to resources and arts professionals throughout Chicago

Learn More about the Studio Fellowship Program
View the Call for Applications
View the Fellowship Information Packet

Executive Director, Angee Lennard says,

“The positive changes we are making to these programs are really emblematic of what our community can expect from Spudnik Press Cooperative as we enter our second decade of programming. We are taking a close look at each of our programs and looking for ways to provide deeper support for our artists.” – Angee Lennard, Executive Director

The 2018 Residency will support three artists. The Studio Fellowship support eight artists each year. Applications for both of these programs are currently open. Applications for the next Studio Fellowship cohort close March 25, 2018. Applications for the 2018 Residency are due April 1, 2018.

Image: 2017 Studio Fellows

Behind The Chili Interview Series: Fata Morgana Press

What exactly is fata morgana? Simply put, it’s a mirage. More specifically,  it’s an unusual and complex form of mirage that is seen in a narrow band right above the horizon. These rapidly changing mirages significantly distort the object(s) which they are based on. Often times making the object completely unrecognizable.

Fata Morgana Press is the studio of Mary Clare Butler and Amy Leners. They embrace all forms of craft from the traditional to the experimental. This interdisciplinary practice allows Mary Clare and Amy to constantly shift their approach to traditional craft, making the outcomes unique and unexpected.

Come February 24, Fata Morgana Press will present their manipulation of vegetarian chili for our consumption at The Hashbrown Showdow: Spudnik’s Rootin’ Tootin’ Fair & Chili Cook Off! Or will it just appear to be vegetarian chili?

Read on to learn more about Fata Morgana Press in the second installment of our pre-Hashbrown interview series:

Spudnik Press: How did Fata Morgana come to be? What does Fata Morgana do?

Fata Morgana: Fata Morgana began when Mary Clare and Amy were finishing grad school at Columbia. While working in the papermaker’s garden together, they began to plan a future studio. When they saw the press listed for sale in Chicago, they jumped at the opportunity. Luckily and they were able to rent space in the Chicago Sustainable Manufacturing Center alongside bike frame builders, woodworkers, puppet makers and other craftspeople. Since then, they’ve collaborated on papermaking and bookbinding workshops, broadsides, music packaging, and posters, in addition to producing their own work. Last year, Angela Davis Fegan joined the studio, where she prints the Lavendar Menace Poster Project and maintains an active studio practice.

SP: Where did the name come from?

FM: MC was reading The Yiddish Policemen’s Union when they were trying to think of names for the new venture and the phrase just kind of leapt out. Upon further investigation, the two discovered it was the term for a complex mirage named after an sorceress who used witchcraft to lure sailors to their deaths. They decided it was a fitting name for a studio run by women with an experimental approach to traditional craft.

SP: You’re a returning chef and you competed in our Printing Dash competitions over the summer. Do either of you play competative sports? Or strategy games? 

FM: Hell no. Unless bowling counts. We just take chili very seriously.

SP: Last year’s chili was quite delicious. Will you be working from the same recipe or trying something new? 

FM: We received some secret chiles from a friend so we’re working on a new recipe that incorporates those!

SP: What is the Chicago People’s Library?

FM: Right around the time Amy and Mary Clare were starting the studio, they met Courtney Bowles and Mark Strandquist; their People’s Library Project was featured in the Social Paper show curated by Jessica Cochran and Melissa Potter. While making paper from deaccessioned library books at the show, they got to talking to Sulzer Regional Library’s local history librarian, Julie Lynch. With Courtney and Mark’s blessing, they started a Chicago chapter of the People’s Library. They’ve held ten-ish workshops at the Sulzer and South Chicago branches of the Chicago Public Library, as well as the Chi Teen Lit Fest, where participants made paper, bound books, and recorded their experiences and memories of Chicago. The books were displayed at Sulzer with plans to circulate across the city.

SP: Many thanks Mary Clare and Amy! See ya at the Show Down! 

The Hashbrown Show Down:
Spudnik’s Rootin Tootin’ Fair & Chili Cook-Off

Saturday, February 24, 2018
5:00 pm

Reserve Your Tickets


Now Hiring: Part-time Development Assistant

Spudnik Press Cooperative is accepting applications for a part-time Development Assistant position.

The Development Assistant will broadly contribute to Spudnik Press Cooperative’s development and fundraising efforts. Working in a supportive role to the Executive Director, this position will primarily focus on individual giving and special events.

To apply:


Announcing New Professional Practices Member Programs

With a new year, come new opportunities for Spudnik Press members! Professional Practices is our new comprehensive professional development series. Each year, Spudnik Press Cooperative will continue to offer our members exclusive access to exhibition opportunities, print exchanges, and member art sales. Newly added opportunities include quarterly portfolio reviews and off-site visits to galleries, museums, artist studios and more.

Continuing our mission to provide comprehensive artistic support to our our community of printmakers, we are launching an ongoing portfolio review program. Our Professional Practice: Portfolio Review series allows any Spudnik Press member to sign up for a 30-minute individual portfolio review with a guest curator, educator, gallery director, or arts administrator. Throughout 2018, there will be four portfolio review opportunities. We’re delighted to kick-off the year with Chicago-based visual artist, curator, educator, and musician Jordan Martins! Later in the year, we will be joined by Meg Duguid, Elizabeth Lalley, and Bert Green.

We are also broadening the scope of our conversations with art professionals in Chicago by going directly to the source. From the museum and the gallery to the auction house and the art fair, to intimate conversations with artists and collectors, our Professional Practice: Off-site Visit series will introduce members to the numerous and diverse art spaces and individuals that contribute to Chicago’s vibrant arts landscape. In addition to connecting with other professionals in the city, these visits are intended to present our members with a range of resources and career paths. 

For more information and current opportunities, please visit Member Opportunities. If you are not currently a member and would like to partake in these opportunities, please join or renew your membership.

Image: Portfolio Review with guest artist and curator Betsy Odom and Grace Makuch, Studio Fellowship Alumnus.

Behind The Chili Interview Series: Barrel Maker Printing

As we gear up for the Hashbrown Showdown on Saturday, February 24, we are excited to introduce a few of our featured chefs in a series of interviews. First up: Barrel Maker Printing!

All the cool kids screen print their own t-shirts. If, for some reason, that’s not possible the cool kids get their shirts printed at Barrel Maker. Just glance at their Instagram feed (@barrelmakerprinting) and you will know it’s true.

The folks at Barrel Maker are some of the coolest and most creative that we’ve known in the world of Chicago screen printing. Even though their presses are now based in Elk Grove, they keep a foot in Chi with a remote office in Logan Square.

We asked Zach Corn, VP of Sales, a few questions to acquaint those that have not met Barrel Maker. While we can speak to their caliber of awesome, you’ll have to come out to The Hashbrown Showdown to gauge the caliber of their chili.

SP: Where did the name Barrel Maker Screenprinting come from?

ZC: The Owners’ first kid was named Cooper, named after Agent Cooper from Twin Peaks. Since a Cooper is someone who makes Barrels, they figured it would be a cool Ode to Cooper.

SP: Who will be the lead chili chef? How did they earn that honor?

ZC: I’m actually going to be the lead Chef on this journey. My wife and I have a few chili swaps every year and it isn’t a huge departure for me to make some chili and sling it to some friends.

SP: What is the craziest or weirdest event that you’ve done live screen printing at?

ZC: Lollapalooza was pretty crazy just with the amount of people there and the format. We also did one at an opening event for a climbing gym. People really enjoy seeing printing happening. You can easily take the process for granted when you see it every day.

SP: Do you have a pet peeve regarding file prep? If you could give one tip to our artists about how to better prepare their file for printing, what would it be?

ZC: I don’t like when files are Just call it something. And keeping everything on one artboard and not giving just the art that is needed. If the preview is of something we aren’t even printing, it could be cleaner. In the end though I’m usually just happy people are working with us.

SP: Thanks Zach! And for you cool kids that print your own shirts, check out Barrel Maker’s line of eco-social-friendly apparel, Allmade.

The Hashbrown Show Down:
Spudnik’s Rootin Tootin’ Fair & Chili Cook-Off

Saturday, February 24, 2018
5:00 pm

Reserve Your Tickets




Join Our Board of Directors: Seeking Artists & Art Supporters

The Spudnik Press Board of Directors is a team of experts working behind the scenes to ensure our organization is resilient, mission-driven, and advocating day-in-day-out for artists and the arts. Our Board supports staff as we spearhead new initiatives like our Equipment Fund and expand Member opportunities. They also plans classy and fun fundraising events like our recent Print Factory Art Party.

With so much happening at Spudnik Press, the Board of Directors plans to expand from 8 to 12 members. Incoming directors will have the opportunity to contribute to our next Strategic Plan, help us improve our fundraising efforts, and expand our network of supporters and advocates. We do have a few particular needs:

  • Active members of Spudnik Press: Represent your fellow artists!
  • Project management and group facilitation experience
  • Finance and accounting experience
  • Fundraising and/or event planning experience
  • Business planning and/or strategic planning experience

Key Responsibilities Include:

  • Interpret the organization’s work and values, represent the organization, and act as a spokesperson.
  • Represent Spudnik Press stakeholders through approving annual budget, business decisions and participating in an annual performance review of Executive Director.
  • Extend personal invitations to potential supporters, continually expanding our network of donors and clients.
  • Attend bi-monthly board meetings held on Wednesday evenings, 6-8pm
  • Serve on one of the following committee: Development, Governance, Annual Benefit, Finance or Programming.
  • Contribute a minimum of $375 to Spudnik Press Cooperative per board term.
  • If this is your first time serving on a board, attend Legal & Fiduciary Responsibilities training.

Key Benefits Include:

  • Opportunities for professional development as a board member.
  • Honorary Spudnik Press Membership, inclusive of all benefits, to align with their board terms.
  • Endless gratitude from Spudnik Press staff.

To Apply:

  • Send resume or bio summarizing qualifications plus a letter of inquiry to Angee Lennard, Executive Director,

Download the Board of Directors Job Description

Image: Board Members, Andy Warhol Dutes Miller & Stephen DeSantis at the Print Factory Art Party, Oct. 2017. 

10th Anniversary Campaign: 55% to $65,000

As of 1/11/2018, we have made it 55% towards our goal of raising $65,000 goal from individuals and businesses by June 2018. Our organization is so grateful to the 275 people who contributed $35,906 thus far.

We are asking our community to consider donating $50, $25, or even just $5 to enable us provide continue and improve the caliber of programs that we offer Chicago’s creative community.

Ways to Support our Campaign:

  1. Make a cash donation. Join our Giving Circle with a $250+ donation.
  2. Become a Spudnik Press Member.
  3. Contribute specifically to the Equipment Fund.
  4. Ask your employer to become a Sponsor.
  5. Add a $1 donation when you attend Open Studio sessions.


Make a tax deductible donation

10th Anniversary Campaign: 54% to the Goal!

Since our last 10th Anniversary Campaign update, we have received $2099 in donations totaling $34,792.89 from individuals and businesses since we celebrated our first decade of programming (June 2017).

We are 54% to our $65,000 goal! To stay on schedule, we need $1208 by 12/31/17 from donationssponsorships, and memberships.

We are asking our community to consider donating $50, $25, or even just $5 to enable us provide continue and improve the caliber of programs that we offer Chicago’s creative community.

Support our 10th Anniversary Campaign

Ways to Support our Campaign:

  1. Make a cash donation. Join our Giving Circle with a $250+ donation.
  2. Become a Spudnik Press Member.
  3. Contribute specifically to the Equipment Fund.
  4. Ask your employer to become a Sponsor.
  5. Add a $1 donation when you attend Open Studio sessions.

Donor Incentives:

First Time Donors:
Donate at any level to be entered in a raffle to win a Winter 2018 class or workshop or Spudnik Press merchandise.

Donors at $250+ Level:
As a member of our Giving Circle, you and a guest will be invited to our donor-exclusive Ink & Drink Art Party on Friday, January 26.

Make a tax deductible donation

10th Anniversary Campaign: HALF WAY THERE!

With the help of 289 supporters who donated between $3 and $1000 since we launched our 10th Anniversary Campaign, we have hit a milestone: 50% to our $65,000 goal!

Thank you to each and every person who has pitched in so far to help us meet our ambitious goal. We cannot wait for our 2018 program improvements to go public so that you can see your donations at work.

To stay on schedule to 100%, we need to bring in $3307 by 12/31/17 from donations, sponsorships, and memberships.

Support our 10th Anniversary Campaign

Ways to Support our Campaign:

  1. Make a cash donation. Join our Giving Circle with a $250+ donation.
  2. Become a Spudnik Press Member.
  3. Contribute specifically to the Equipment Fund.
  4. Ask your employer to become a Sponsor.
  5. Add a $1 donation when you attend Open Studio sessions.

Donor Incentives:

First Time Donors:
Donate at any level to be entered in a raffle to win a Winter 2018 class or workshop or Spudnik Press merchandise.

Donors at $250+ Level:
As a member of our Giving Circle, you and a guest will be invited to our donor-exclusive Ink & Drink Art Party on Friday, January 26.

Make a tax deductible donation

Spudnik Press Welcomes Four New Studio Fellows

This fall, Spudnik Press Cooperative is hosting our ninth cohort of fellows. Through our Fellowship Program, four artists will receive full studio access and professional development opportunities through May 2018. In addition to developing their personal body of artwork, each fellow leads works with artists at our studio by leading one Open Studio session each week.
Their Fellowships will culminate in Spring 2018 with a full day of activities at Spudnik Press programmed by the fellows to share back with our community.They each look forward to meeting our community, and with the support of our network of artists, learning new skills, finding resources throughout the city to support or inspire their practice, and sharing their own art practice.

2018 Fellows

Molly Berkson is a multi-disciplinary artist working primarily in paper, print, book, and fiber crafts. She has a fondness for the subcultures and subcultural practices that employ amateur and anti-authoritarian ideologies, and an appreciation for craft in all its forms–in its distinct and intermingling boundaries. In her practice, she patchworks together these specific aesthetic practices and do-it-yourself methods.

Ben Garbus is an artist working in Chicago. He holds a BA from Oberlin College and has exhibited at the Royal Scottish Academy, the Minnesota Center for Book Arts, and SPACES Gallery in Cleveland. Garbus hails from western Massachusetts.

Brendan Robson graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a BFA in Graphic Design in May of 2017. As a designer Brendan enjoys exploring the areas of intersection between analog and digital content and the opportunities for discovery that exists within that space. Primarily focused on aspects of design, printmaking, and multimedia installation, Brendan’s personal body of work addresses themes of memory constructs, genetics, digital identity, and stasis.

Cristina Umaña is a Colombian artist who recently finished her BFA at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her work is characterized by drawings done with a funky, loose line that reanimates deformed bodies and quotidian moments. Her drawings, which intertwine language and form, create a mood that is both ironic and intimate. She currently lives and works in Chicago.