As an important emergent genre of the new century, socially engaged art, or, social practice, is broadly characterized by artists’ emphasis on community, democracy, social change, participation and, in the case of hand papermaking, pedagogy. While bookmaking, printmaking and hand papermaking have long been deeply intertwined as creative practices that naturally lend themselves to collaboration, we are seeing more recently the idea of “the collective” purposefully and reflexively embraced and incorporated by hand papermakers beyond the studio, both in process and product. This is manifest specifically through community-based workshops, papermakers’ gardens, grassroots libraries and participatory installations, and it is happening internationally.
Through such platforms, artists can creatively assert, through collaborative craft, the deep relevance of conviviality, skill sharing and the printed word in an increasingly paperless, technology-driven world.
Artists include: Kevin Basl, Book Bombs/Michelle Wilson & Mary Tasillo, Laura Anderson Barbata, Stephanie Barrale and Michael Dunican, Drew Cameron, Combat Paper Projects, Greg Delanty, Megan Diddie, Angela Fegen, Fresh Press at the University of Illinois, Julia Ann Goodman, Megan Heeres, Karen Heft & Alan Govenar, Helen Hiebert, Tatana Kellner, Alison Knowles, Nathan Lewis, Love Positive Women, Margaret Mahan, Drew Matott, Papermaker’s Pack/Jillian Bruschera & Maxum Bruschera, Alva Mooses, Jeffrey Morin, Heidi Neilson & Chris Patrone, Peace Paper, The People’s Paper Co-op/ Mark Strandquist & Courtney Bowles, The Poetry Foundation/Nick Dubois, Melissa Potter, Robert Possehl, Dallas Price, Maggie Puckett, John Risseeuw, Seeds InService, Megan Singleton, Peter & Donna Thomas, and others.
In support of this exhibition the Center will be hosting two free workshops: Keeping The Fire Alive – A Collaborative Pulp Printing Discussion with Book Bombs March 4th
and Papermake Manhattan with Chicago 77 April 1st. All are welcome to participate, but space is limited to the first 20 registrants. Please register by clicking the links above to the workshop pages.