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2008 Exhibitions

Experimental Literature & the Intersection With Artists’ Books

This curated exhibition highlights the ongoing exploration of writers/artists in the area of experimental literature vis-a-vis artists’ books. JAB24 – The Journal of Artists’ Books Fall 2008 – will be launched at the opening on October 3. This issue is titled Experimental Literature and the Intersection with Artists’ Books and is edited by Craig Dworkin and Kyle Schlesinger. Rather than focusing specifically on the Beat culture and literature, the curators have chosen to allow contributors to elucidate and interpret the terms “experimental literature” and “artists’ books” for themselves. Essays by Alastair Johnston, Susan Vanderborg, Tate Shaw and Chris Burnett are included.

To celebrate the opening of the exhibit and special issue of the Journal of Artists’ Books on “Intersections of Experimental Literature and Artists’ Books,” there will be readings by poets based in the greater Chicago area and whose works exemplify contemporary experimental poetic practice in the tradition fostered by the small press and artists’ books. These readings are organized by Patrick Durgin and David Pavelich.

October 3, 2008 – January 23, 2009,
Opening Reception: Friday, October 3,
5:30 – 7:30PM

Jack Kerouac: on the Road + 66 International Book Covers from the Collection of Horst Spandler

Jack Kerouac’s iconic manuscript scroll of On the Road is the centerpiece of a college-wide initiative investigating the disparate group of poets, artists, filmmakers and musicians known as the Beat Generation. Considered by many as the founding text of the Beat Generation, On the Road was produced by Kerouac in a three-week writing marathon in April 1951. The manuscript is a continuous scroll of translucent paper, 120 feet long, that Kerouac created to feed through his typewriter without interruption. This exhibition offers visitors the rare opportunity to see the original draft, complete with Kerouac’s own edits in pencil. This manuscript is on loan from the collection of James S. Irsay.

Kerouac’s global reputation is evidenced in the numerous foreign editions of his books—many of which are still in print. Complementing the exhibition of the scroll, the Center presents On the Road Around the World: 66 International Book Covers from the Collection of Horst Spandler. The covers are a feast for the eyes, evincing a wide-array of graphic styles and interpretations that range from the beautifully evocative to conspicuous caricature.

October 3–November 26, 2008
Opening Reception, October 3, 2008
5:30 pm–8:00 pm

5th International Book & Paper Arts Triennial ExhibitionJuly 25 – September 12, 2008

Closing Reception: Friday, September 12, 5:30–7:30PM.
A catalog of the exhibition will be available for purchase during the Closing Reception.

Fifty-nine art works from the papermaking and artists’ book genre will be exhibited during the 5th International Book & Paper Arts Triennial. This juried exhibition features fine and letterpress printed and bound books, broadsides, artists’ books, book objects, sculptural paper, paper cuts, pulp painting and altered books that have been selected from an international base of the most recognized artists working in the medium today. Paper vessels that dangle from ceiling to floor; sculpture that is 2 inches tall; a book “written” in broken glass; another containing the mnemonic bird calls of Midwest songbirds; etchings of Paris gardens; a taxonomy of urban fowl (of the human kind); illustrated poems; corn stalks made of paper; a photo journey through a car wash‹all can be viewed and enjoyed. A catalog of the exhibition will be available for purchase during the closing reception on Friday, September 12.

Forty-four finalists

  • Lyn Ashby
  • M.K. Augustine
  • Alice Austin
  • Fairley Barnes
  • Jana Brubaker
  • Rob Buchert
  • Elaine Chong
  • Margaret Couch Cogswell
  • Archie Granot
  • Karen Hanmer
  • Mary Hark
  • Mary Heebner
  • Judy Bergman Hochberg
  • Craig Jobson
  • David B. Johnson
  • Peggy Johnston
  • Wendy Kawabata
  • Ellen Knudson
  • Carole Kunstadt
  • Angela Liguori
  • Silvana Amato
  • Elaine Langerman
  • Claudia Lee
  • Marie Marcano
  • Kim Matthews
  • Daniel Mellis
  • Tim Mosely
  • Elizabeth Munger
  • Sabina U. Nies
  • Jan Owen
  • Anne Pelikan
  • Sumi Perera
  • Sandi Rigby
  • Regula Russelle
  • Kitty Maryatt
  • Shawn Sheehy
  • Richard Shipps
  • Areujana Sim
  • Tricia Smout
  • Diane M. Stemper
  • S.C. Thayer
  • Jennifer Vignone Laura Wait
  • Beata Wehr
  • Linney Wix.

Jurors Robert

  • McCamant
  • Pam Paulsrud
  • Max Yela

Really Big Paper + Postcard Art Competition

JAB - The History of PublicationJune 6–July 12, 2008.
Reception: June 6, 2008 5:30 – 7:30

Jill Littlewood and Peter Sowiski, two nationally known artist/papermakers make VERY large paper. Put them together and you get REALLY BIG PAPER. Jill Littlewood’s full room installation is called Death and Other Lives. As she says, “I chose death as a topic because I wanted something big enough to be both mythic and encyclopedic. It was a good choice–death takes you everywhere.” Peter Sowiski’s large scale art grew out of his experiments with pulp painting and his “All American Boy” interest in army planes and their weapons. He investigates size with his large-scale studies of these nightmarish fantasies of what we now call WMDs.

The Curt Teich Postcard Archives at the Lake County (IL) Discovery Museum sponsors a biennial “design a postcard” competition. The winners get their art reproduced as a real post card and the collection forms the POST CARD ART COMPETITION EXHIBITION. When this traveling show arrives at the Center its international response brings to the gallery a great variety of art, wit and chicanery.

Jab – the History of the Publication

The Book of Origins

March 7 – ­March 22. 2008.
Reception: March 7, 5:30­8:00

The HISTORY OF JAB (The Journal of Artist¹s Books) will present the historical route the magazine has taken through a variety of conceptual and aesthetic trails over a 13-year period as the only national publication devoted to the subject. JAB¹s primary question and the reason it continues to stimulate discussion is: What is the form of the book? While this question does not occur to most of us, upon further inspection, the question of a book¹s form, especially when it is applied to the Œartist¹s book¹, opens a fascinating look into new approaches by artists in the exploration of one of our oldest means of cultural communication. JAB is now produced and published out of Columbia College Chicago¹s Center for Book & Paper Arts. The exhibition will feature alongside archival copies, manuscripts, texts, film, plates and press sheets, artists¹ books reviewed in past issues and various other ephemera.

The Book of Origins: a Survey of American Fine Bindings

January 12 – February 23, 2008

The Book of Origins: A Survey of American Fine Binding has its genesis in an international binding exhibition organized by one of the prominent Canadian book arts organizations. The bilingual letterpress printed text tells the creation story of the Huron people in French and in English. This traveling exhibition features twenty contemporary fine bindings of this text, by ten American binders. The group includes established masters as well as gifted emerging artists. Two works are presented by each binder: their binding in response to the Book of Origins text, and an additional example of their work.

The binders represented in The Book of Origins: A Survey of American Fine Binding have noted that the majority of book arts exhibition opportunities in the United States are limited to nontraditional book forms. They are committed to presentation of, and education about, the art and craft of fine binding.