June Greetings!

What with ending my former professorial job and actively gearing up for summer exhibits, classes, and other art-related activities, I completely missed sending out a May newsletter!  But I am delighted to be a full-time professional bookbinder at this point in my life!

I’m excited to be offering a week-long bookbinding camp June 13-17 at my studio in Winston-Salem, NC.  We will learn a different bookbinding technique (folded books, French linked, Romanesque, longstitch, and clothbound case binding) each day.  Sign up for a single day or the entire week – there are 3 spaces still available.

My sister, Patricia Minard – a calligrapher and water color artist, and I completed a major project of 25 Advent (or other special occasion countdown) calendars.  These beautiful items are designed to be used year after year and come with a set of 41 activity cards intended to help you place family connections above more transient items that often accompany such calendars.  We have already sold a third of the supply.  They are priced at $75 each plus tax and shipping if necessary.  Dimensions are 11 1/2″ tall by 9″ wide, closed.  To view photos of these, go to Books for Special Occasion under the Portfolio tab.  Please let me know if you are interested in one.

In partnership with Sawtooth School for Visual Arts, I have been teaching classes at the SECU Family House, an accommodation alternative for out-of-town medical patients and their caregivers.  This experience of sharing art with folks who are dealing with major health concerns warms my heart.  In sharing marbling with a woman who had been a painter and is now recovering from a stroke that paralyzed her right side: “This is the first time I have felt like an artist again since my stroke.”  In sharing origami books with a young woman who is caregiver for her seriously ill mother: “This is good place to write down what she says.  I don’t want to forget anything.”  I am delighted to be a part of bringing smiles.

I have also been immersing myself in old books and book history recently.  A young man brought me a selection of books from his great-great-great grandfather’s mid-1800s library to clean and repair.  Some of them unfortunately were in very bad shape.  Do your books a favor and keep them from damp and exposure to rodents or insects – there are many tasty ingredients in books, especially those bound prior to 1900.  Still, it has been fun to look through the books as I gently clean individual pages.  See my Book Repair tab for more information on what I offer in terms of book repair.

I also have been taking a class called, The History of the World in 25 Books, through the Lifelong Learning program at Wake Forest University.  Taught by Megan Mulder, the librarian for rare books and special collections at WFU, the course focuses not only on book history but how books as objects mesh with the history of the modern world.  I love having the opportunity to handle books from the middle ages and Renaissance.  As always, I am as interested in studying the structure and the feel of the paper as in the book’s contents.  The course is limited in it’s world view because of the limits of the collection there at Wake, but is most interesting nonetheless.

I will be traveling to Mainz, Germany – home of the Gutenberg Museum – at the end of this month.  

Anne Murray
Bookbinder and Papermaker

June 2016