The Print(ed) Word project kicked off a year ago, when Lisa Murphy-Lamb of Loft 112 and Carrie Phillips Kieser, director of Alberta Printmakers, put 12 writers and 12 artists in a room together and set them to work, in pairs, on a collaborative project.
Each artist selected by Alberta Printmakers went home with a text by one of the writers (works including poetry, fiction and short stories published by Loft 112’s small press), tasked with creating an artist book inspired by the text. The writer-artist teams could collaborate in whatever way best suited them, but one goal of the project was to plant the seeds of extraordinary new relationships where, for example, an artist who had never read poetry could be paired with a poet with limited experience in visual arts. Many of the participants wound up becoming regular visitors to each other’s studios and writing desks, learning about and supporting each other’s practices.
This month, Loft 112 and Alberta Printmakers are inviting everyone to come and experience the exciting results of the project. On January 11th there is an opening where you can see all 12 of the completed artist books on display, pick up a catalogue for the exhibit, and see additional prints made by the artists.
The really exciting events, though, are the Salons. Each of these intimate events will showcase the books made by 4 of the 12 pairs of collaborators. The books will be off the walls and opened up so that you can get up close to see all the beautiful details. The writers will read from the texts they contributed, and the artists will be speaking about the books they created and sharing some insights into their process. Seats for the salons are limited; tickets can be purchased here.
It’s worth noting that what you’ll be seeing aren’t illustrated versions of the original texts. An artist book is a wonderfully versatile form of art that can take many shapes and incorporate a wide variety of media, and in the case of this project, artists were instructed, simply, to read and respond to the text. With a host of well-known and accomplished Calgary artists and writers contributing to the project, the books that emerged from these collaborations will delight you in their variety.
Loft 112, 112, 535 8th Ave. SE, loft112.org
Alberta Printmakers, albertaprintmakers.comBuy Tickets
Looking to add some physical activity into your winter routine? Check out this list of winter sports to try in and around Calgary.
Text by Julya Hajnoczky; All photos by Lisa Murphy-Lamb