Printers Ball 2013: Trip & Return

Spudnik Press Cooperative is thrilled to announce the 9th annual Printers’ Ball: Trip & Return. The annual celebration of literary culture and printmaking will be held at the Hubbard Street Lofts, 1821 W. Hubbard Street, Chicago. Spudnik is taking the reins of this year’s program from the Poetry Foundation, the event’s founding organizer. This year’s program returns the Printers’ Ball to its roots as a neighborhood event with an emphasis on readings and performances, live printmaking demos and workshops, exhibitions, and food and drink tastings. The festivities will span an afternoon, running from noon until 6 pm on Saturday, July 27, activating seven gallery and studio spaces through the building and featuring some of the best poetry, visual, and culinary culture in the country.

“Spudnik has grown and our studio has integrated more printing processes, including letterpress and offset printing. These processes lend themselves to book arts and publishing projects. With Printers’ Ball celebrating the materiality of the literary arts, I think we’re an ideal organization to address how literature and printmaking intrinsically speak to and support each other,” says Spudnik Press Cooperative’s founder and executive director, Angee Lennard.

Founded in 2004 by Poetry Magazine Associate Editor Fred Sasaki, the Ball was first held at the now-shuttered HotHouse, later moving to various venues throughout Chicago, including the Double Door, the Zhou B Center, the Museum of Contemporary Art, and Columbia College Chicago. Along the way, it has grown from a local celebration to an event with presenters from all over the United States and drawing attendees, last year more than 4,000, from across the city and beyond.

The theme for 2013 is “Trip & Return.” A letterpress printing term, it’s also a playful acknowledgement of the return to discussion of the craft. This daytime event will host letterpress and screen printing demonstrations, discussions by well-known print and poster makers, readings from local poets, and performances from Elastic Arts Foundation musicians throughout the many art and design spaces within the spacious building. Local food trucks and beverage vendors will also be on hand. As is tradition, magazines, literary organizations, and design studios—over 400—from across the country will provide complimentary magazines and ephemera to all attendees of this free event.

Confirmed presenters include:

Artist & writer Tony Fitzpatrick in conversation with Fred Sasaki
Printshop demos with Brad Vetter & Alex Valentine
Free jazz performances curated by Elastic Arts Foundation with Michael Zerang, Fred Longberg-Holm, Paul Giallorenzo, & Aaron Zarzutzki
Readings and broadsides curated by Woodland Pattern with poets Anne Kingsbury, Lewis Freedman, & Anna Vitale
Poetics Theater with the Danny’s Reading Series
Conversations with Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum, Detroit Wood Type Co. & Signal Return
Reading and conversation with writer and visual artist Mary Burger
Risograph demos with SPARE
Workshops on surrealist poetry, bookmaking, & bookbinding
Summer spritzers by Hornswaggler Arts & WBC-Goose Island Root Beer and Spicy Ginger courtesy of the WIT Beverage Company
Sweet treats by Ice3 Ice Cream & savory snacks by 5411 Empanadas
On-the-spot tote bag screen printing by Spudnik Press Cooperative
Read/Write Library’s BiblioTreka Mobile Library

Curators include:

Sarah Dodson, MAKE Magazine; Nell Taylor, Read/Write Library; Luke Daly, arrow as aarow and Spudnik Press Cooperative; Adrienne Miller and Angee Lennard. Spudnik Press Cooperative; Chad Kouri, The Post Family; Elisabeth Hass, Simple Honest Work; Alison Kleiman, DePaul Art Museum; and Corrina Lesser, Chicago Humanities Festival, among others.

Printers’ Ball 2013 is presented in partnership with Spudnik Press Cooperative Printshop and Annex, Platform, Johalla Projects, The Post Family, Simple Honest Work, and IAEOU. Made possible by the Poetry Foundation and Poetry magazine.

Click below for admission tickets:

General Admission
Surrealist Poetry
Folded Book Structures
Book Binding

Charlie Megna: Lost Tribes of Renni

Heavily influenced by Eastern philosophy, Native American rituals and American skate culture, Charlie Megna’s colorful gouache and gold-leaf paintings combine loaded, symbolic motifs with the banal, the humorous and the commonplace. In these tribe paintings, we recognize glimpses of sacred ceremonies that feel familiar, but that expand with closer inspection into mystery and secrecy. In addition to the paintings, Megna creates costumes and physical relics to further realize the world of his tribes, and is preparing a small-run artist’s book of myths and alphabets to accompany this show. When exhibited along with the paintings, these surrounding materials combine to take the shape of an anthropological exhibition comprised of the real artifacts of an imaginary society.

June 2013 Drink & Draw: Life Drawing

Theme: Life Drawing
Beverage: Gin BYO Mixer

We’ll feature a real live model! And who knows, maybe you can draw the person sitting next to you too. This is one Drink & Draw you don’t want to miss!

Drink and Draw is our bi-monthly night devoted to drawing practices. There’s no teacher and no pretensions. We provide a theme for the evening and a theme drink. Attendees provide a sketchbook and drawing utensils. Please come, and bring your friends while you’re at it.

Print our 2013 Drink & Draw Calendar and stick it on your refrigerator today!

Long-Arm Stapler First Aid Exhibition

Care is a disquieted state of mixed uncertainty, apprehension, and responsibility; a suffering of the mind; painstaking and watchful attention, maintenance, charge, and supervision. Self-care and first aid places these concerns towards oneself with a DIY mentality. Long-Arm Stapler First Aid brings together an assortment of zines and comics that address health-related issues ranging from mental to physical, personal to societal, and preventative to regenerative. These largely self-published works address, at times, incredibly personal experiences, usually with a large dose of wit.

Unlike a film or a painting, readers of zines and comics are able to engage with these works at their own pace, choosing when they are ready to confront the next page. Perhaps this is what allows authors to broach difficult, and often very personal, topics with great breadth of emotion, honesty, and clarity. Through the combination of words and images, artists are able to rely on multiple modes of communication to bring together the tangible and the cerebral. Often the very act of making a zine is considered a therapeutic caring action.

This exhibition of largely self-published works tackles self-care from many angles: health, grooming, food preparation, self-defense, coping strategies, defense mechanisms, mental or spiritual development and even soul enrichment. At their core these pieces suggest we must be our own advocates for our own health and well being.

Long Arm Stapler First Aid will also include a limited edition exhibition zine, compiled by Liz Mason, encompassing relevant self-care themes in zines and mini-comics such as: heal- ing, grief, fitness, and medical issues, and a limited edition screenprint by Ramsey Beyer, published by Spudnik Press.

In honor of self-publishing as a means to foster well-being, Spudnik Press is proud to host this exhibition featuring dozens of zine makers from across the country, including Edie Fake, Rinko Endo, Kathleen McIntyre, Ramsey Beyer, Liz Prince, Dina Kelberman, Sara McHenry, and more.

Liz Mason is the manager of Quimby’s, as well as the editor and publisher for Caboose.
Neil Brideau is comics artist and comics sommelier at Quimby’s, as well as an organizer of CAKE, Chicago’s Alternative Comics Expo.

*Image Credit to Dina Kelbermann

April 2013 Drink & Draw: Food

Theme: Food
Beverage: Wine

Bring the oddest item your grocer supplies. A classic bunch of grapes, crab legs, tropical fruit, bundt cake: it’s all fun to draw!

Drink and Draw is our bi-monthly night devoted to drawing practices. There’s no teacher and no pretensions. We provide a theme for the evening and a theme drink. Attendees provide a sketchbook and drawing utensils. Please come, and bring your friends while you’re at it.

Print our 2013 Drink & Draw Calendar and stick it on your refrigerator today!

Growth / Street Puzzles Exhibition

Juried by Jeannette Tremblay and Alison Kleiman

Featuring work by: Catherine Sollman, Courtney Sennish, Inah Choe, Julie Cowan, Malikah Fernandez, Peter Lutz, Elizabeth Kennedy, and a collaborative piece by Sean McKay and Pablo Philipps.

+Street Puzzles
By Victoria Martinez

On view in The Annex, Spudnik’s newly opened gallery and collaborative workspace, will be a juried exhibition entitled “Growth” as well as new work from Spudnik’s recent Artist in Residence, Victoria Martinez.

In honor of their recent addition of The Annex (the third expansion in as many years!) Spudnik released an open call on the theme of growth. This exhibition takes a close look at the idea of metamorphosis in all its forms and celebrates exceptional work in the field of printmedia.

The nine artists represented in this exhibition speak to the theme of growth in many ways, literally and figuratively – a change in size, number, significance, maturation, development, or identity. Growth artists include: Catherine Sollman (Chicago), Courtney Sennish (Providence, RI) , Inah Choe (Chicago), Julie Cowan (Evanston), Malikah Fernandez (Chicago), Elizabeth Kennedy (Chicago), Peter Lutz (Providence, RI), and a collaborative piece by Sean McKay (Chicago) and Pablo Philipps (St. Louis).

Growth was juried by Jeannette Tremblay, of the Hyde Park Art Center, and Alison Kleiman, of the DePaul Art Museum. Kleiman also serves as the Vice President of the Spudnik Press Board of Directors.

Simultaneously on view is work produced by Spudnik Artist in Residence, Victoria Martinez. Martinez, who lives and works in Chicago, has created an edition of vibrant screenprints on paper. During her residency she created work based on the trips between her Pilsen apartment and Spudnik Press in the Ukrainian Village. Inspired by text, found objects and urban detritus, Martinez created ephemeral collages that give a second life and greater meaning to previously discarded materials.

February 2013 Drink & Draw: Tattoo Flash

Theme: Tattoo Flash
Beverage: Sailor’s Rum & Coke and Hot Toddies

We’ll dig up some samples of Anchors, Barbed Wire, Bettie Page, and other inspirations for your very own tattoo design!

Drink and Draw is our bi-monthly night devoted to drawing practices. There’s no teacher and no pretensions. We provide a theme for the evening and a theme drink. Attendees provide a sketchbook and drawing utensils. Please come, and bring your friends while you’re at it.

Print our 2013 Drink & Draw Calendar and stick it on your refrigerator today!

Daniel Mellis – Artist’s Books

Daniel Mellis’s work explores the instability of language and the poetics of the philosophical fragment; the relationship between memory, photography, historical documents, and the inaccessibility of the past; the physical remnants of things now absent; and the combinatorial potential of letterforms through prints and artist’s books. His constant experimentation in a wide variety of print media including letterpress, offset lithography, and digital printing results in unified expressions of content and form.

The show consists of four of his larger projects, some smaller works, and a print triptych created especially for the show at Spudnik Press.

June 2012 Drink & Draw: Surrealist Games

We’ve dug up some great surrealist games, such as exquisite corpse, automatic drawing, frottage, decalomania, and coulage. We aim to channel the spirits of Brenton, Duchamp, Aragon, and others!

It is Michelle Mashon’s last night as Drink & Draw’s coordinator, before she heads off to Baton Rouge. Michelle has ran Drink & Draw as far back as 2009 when we just moved to our first commercial space. Let’s send her off with a warm Spudnik toast!

Drink and Draw is our monthly night devoted to drawing practices. There’s no teacher and no pretensions. We provide a theme for the evening and some booze. Please come, bring paper and bring your friends while you are at it.