The Artist Book: Design & Construction
The Artist Book is fundamentally an interactive sculpture. While artist books are often based on traditional sewing and gluing techniques, they typically depart from the everyday paperback by incorporating non-linear narratives, tactile and playful elements, illustrations, unexpected juxtapositions, and a close attention to material details.
During the first weeks of class, students will learn or refresh core bookbinding skills including sewing, gluing, folding, cutting, and measuring. Students are encouraged to bring short quotes, poems, scrap prints, found images and other elements to help incorporate content into these practice projects as well as the final independent project.
Class discussion and friendly critiques will help peers select and plan a unique book project that integrates form and function with their personal aesthetics. Working individually and as a group, students will brainstorm ideas, sketch, and develop a project plan. The lessons in the second half of the class will be driven by the artistic visions of the students and may introduce paste papers, raised and recessed surfaces, hinges, multi-signature bindings, box construction and more.
Those with advanced experience will have time to tackle more ambitious techniques. Those newer to the medium can develop a project that best aligns with their abilities. Students are encouraged to incorporate printmaking processes they are already familiar with into their artist books, however additional printmaking processes will not be taught in class.