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CODEX 2017 - 6th Biennial International Book Fair and Symposium

decoration05 Feb. 2017|08 Feb. 2017
Celebrating the Art of the Book in China 
The 6th Biennal CODEX Book Fair & Symposium: Private Press, Artist Books, Limited & Fine Art Editions

Speakers include: Marshall Weber, NY
Lu Jingren, Beijing
Sue Anderson & Gwen Harrison, Sydney
Betty Bright, Minneapolis
Gaylord Schanilec, Minneapolis
Johannes Strugalla, Mainz


MONDAY, February 6, 2017

7:45 a.m. - 8:00 a.m. : Registration Table Opens. Pick up materials and badges.

8:30 a.m. - 8:45 a.m. : Opening Remarks: Peter Koch - Founder, The Codex Foundation

9:00 a.m. - 9:30 a.m. : Johannes Strugalla

9:30 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. : Betty Bright

10:00 a.m. - 10:45 a.m. : KEYNOTE SPEAKER: Lu Jingren



TUESDAY, February 7, 2017


7:45 a.m. - 8:00 a.m. : Registration Table Opens. Pick up materials and badges. 

8:30 a.m. - 8:45 a.m. : Opening Remarks. 

9:00 a.m. - 9:30 a.m. : Sue Anderson and Gwen Harrison

9:30 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. : Gaylord Schanilec

10:00 a.m. - 10:45 a.m. : KEYNOTE SPEAKER: Marshall Weber

10:45 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. : Closing Remarks: Susan Filter – Board Member, The Codex Foundation





MONDAY, February 6, 2017



Born in 1943 in Lubin, Poland, Johannes Strugalla lives and works in Mainz (Germany) and Paris. As a visual artist and a poet, Johannes is a co-founder of despalles éditions with his wife Françoise Despalles. He uses the book as his medium of choice to explore the frontier between text and image. Originated in 1982, despalles éditions has published numerous contemporary artists and poets bridging different esthetic categories and crossing cultural borders, especially those between the French and German languages. Poetic and visual texts are presented bilingually and often with experimental typography. Most of their books are printed letterpress in limited editions, but increasingly, new technologies are employed. In 2000 despalles éditions contributed to the founding of the 13+ artist group. They are active in European small press and artists' book fairs and continue to operate their gallery in Paris.

Lecture: Between Drawing & Printing




DR. BETTY BRIGHT is a writer, curator and historian who helped to start Minnesota Center for Book Arts (MCBA) in 1985. Bright authored No Longer Innocent: Book Art in America 1960-1980 (Granary Press, 2005). She currently writes and speaks on contemporary letterpress printing, craft’s evolving identity, the critical need to capture book art history as it rushes past us, and the book’s growing role in uniting and nurturing art with body, mind and spirit. Her recent involvements include a feature article on Claire Van Vliet in American Craft magazine (January 2016); and an Oral History Project launched in celebration of MCBA’s 30th Anniversary in 2015, in which Bright conducted nineteen oral history interviews with people key to MCBA’s development.

Lecture: Lines of Force: the Hand, the Book, & the Body Electric

As 21st century voyageurs we must navigate a torrent of data requiring constant editing and deletion to avoid our digital submersion and disappearance. New technologies may deliver greater efficiencies, but the human skills and intellect that they replace actually worsen our dislocation from direct experience. This is not news, and we all know that books have never been so needed. We'll consider a few recent works that nurture mind and body while also reminding us of what we share in common, in the midst of our global screen culture. 



LU JINGREN has designed more than one thousand books, and is considered one of China's most influential book designers and illustrators. Lu Jingren's finest and most inventive works provide an amodern response to the centuries-long traditions of both Chinese and Japanese book making.

Lu Jingren studied under the tutelage of Professor Kohei Sugiura of Kobe Design University, Japan in 1989 and 1992. Upon his return to China, he founded the Kingren Art Design Studio, focusing on book design, editing, and translating design and illustration-related publications. Professor Lu currently teaches at the Academy of Arts and Design at Tsinghua University. He has garnered numerous awards for book design in Hong Kong, Germany, USA, and China and is a member of the Alliance Graphique Internnationale (AGI).  

Lecture: Lu Jingren's lecture is about traditional Book Art of China, the effect of the Western book design at the beginning of the 20th century and the changes in book design concepts and working condition of book designers in contemporary China. He will show how the new book design movement is growing in the digital era. Professor Lu Jingren's work is a balance between intellectualism, tradition, and modern visual expression. He has an in-depth grasp of visual information and his work achieves an Asian style without mimicking the past.



TUESDAY, February 7, 2017


SUE ANDERSON & GWEN HARRISON have worked collaboratively to create limited edition artists’ books for over ten years. Although many of their books focus on Australian historic sites and their stories, with a particular interest in institutionalization of certain groups of people, the works often reflect dramas that are universal. The books are represented in collections within Australia as well as in the United States and in Britain.

Both artists design and produce each work, beginning with an initial idea, then by progressively researching material from early colonial times to the present. This forms the core of the book. The structure and design is shaped by the ideas surrounding each work, and the artwork and intaglio plates (usually sugarlift etching on copper) are made, then printed in the studio. The text is often layered and interwoven with narratives mixed with prose and poetry. All of the text is handset using lead and antique wood type, all printed by hand. Many of the books are finely bound in kangaroo leather or kangaroo vellum.


Lecture:  Netting the Small Fry 

Since 2006, when our collaboration commenced, an invisible thread has drawn us along a network of islands. As colonial sites these islands were chosen for their remoteness – to exile. Tales of convicts, emigrants, aborigines, refugees, and their children all converged into a devastating history of disposal, neglect and secrecy. 

Our book from 2011, “Dancing Over Dark Waters”, focused on the colonial prison and the treatment of convicts on Cockatoo Island layered with questions about asylum seekers today. It was while we were on the island that we became aware that girls from as young as six to sixteen years of age were placed there after the convicts had been removed due to public agitation about inhumane conditions in the prison. With the prison buildings vacated a startling decision by the Colonial Secretary deemed Cockatoo Island’s prison to be suitable as an Industrial School and Reformatory for girls. His expediency was as much to disappear these girls of ‘the dangerous and perishing class’, i.e. the poor: as much as it was to ‘reform’ them – an echo of the callous impulse of colonialism in Australia. The girls endured this prison until the results of a Royal Commission Inquiry eventually caused their removal in 1888 to the convict-era Female Factory Precinct at Parramatta. “Howl for a Black Cockatoo”, completed in 2015, attempts to tell the girls story out of respect for their part in Australia’s history.

Some of our research was at Jessie Street National Women’s Library in Sydney where the Library’s Committee invited us to meet Bonney Djuric, the co-founder of Parragirls. We were subsequently invited by Bonney to participate in “The Memory Project” by teaching processes and helping to make artists’ books and prints for a new exhibition “Living Traces” to be held in September 2016.

We became part of the collaborative effort that involved artists, historians, scholars and women who survived the Parramatta Girls Home and Training School in the 1950’s to mid 1970’s. Our invisible thread took us from being theoretical observers to being active participants with survivors of just one of the institutions where systemic abuse damaged thousands upon thousands of young lives caught up in its web.

The Parramatta Female Factory Precinct Memory Project, led by Australian artists Lily Hibberd, and Bonney Djuric, is globally recognized as the first Australian member of the 200-strong International Coalition of Sites of Conscience. We look forward to discussing the project at Codex in 2017.


GAYLORD SCHANILEC established his press, Midnight Paper Sales, in 1980. Since then he has published many books, and accepted numerous commissions including works for the Gregynog Press in Wales and the Grolier Club of New York. He has been the recipient of the Carl Hertzog award for excellence in book design, and the Greynog Prize. His work is represented in most major book arts collections in the United States and in the United Kingdom, and the archive of his working materials is held at the University of Minnesota.

Lecture: My Mighty Journey

Gaylord Schanilec will talk about a book induced by the 12,000-year-long journey of Saint Anthony Falls, the only natural waterfall on the Mississippi River, from Saint Paul, Minnesota, to Minneapolis - a distance all of ten miles.


MARSHALL WEBER is an artist and curator known internationally for his unique and limited edition artists' books, his curation of innovative exhibitions and his support of projects integrating artists' books, counter-culture archives and social justice activism. In 2012, Weber named and co-curated the first "Diamond Leaves Triennial" exhibition at the Central Academy of Fine Arts Museum in Beijing with Chinese artist Xu Bing. Acknowledged as the first museum exhibit of contemporary artists' books and zines in China, and with almost 2,000 titles in over 20,000 square feet of exhibition space, this culmination of a decade of various collaborations between the two artist/curators, is considered to be the largest exhibit of contemporary artist books ever mounted. The show was so well received in was extended twice and while initially conceived as a single exhibit it has become a popular triennial exhibit that has emboldened the contemporary artist book movement throughout China. Weber's provocative books are collected and exhibited by numerous institutions and collectors including: UC Berkeley Centre Georges Pompidou, Duke Collier, FAU, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, German National Library, Jack Ginsberg, Harvard University, LOC, the Met., MoMA, NYPL, Stanford University, UCLA, Victoria and Albert Museum and the Australian War Memorial Museum. This year at Codex, Weber will be delivering a Keynote lecture titled "Relections on Diamond Leaves: artists' books in China now" and will also be featuring artists' books that he has created with Xu Bing or made during travels to China at the Booklyn booth.

Lecture: Reflections on Diamond Leaves: artists' books in China now


05 Feb. 2017|08 Feb. 2017
2537 Haste Street (Between Bowditch & Telegraph)
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