Behind the Archives Door: Debut of the “Refashioning Identity” Collection, Wednesday, September 13, 4 p.m., Archives & Special Collections Seminar Room

RefashioningId_blogContributors to the campus and community embroidery project “Refashioning Identity” will gather to view the collection and share remarks about their work. Artist and stitcher Diana Weymar will join this event to share updates on her own work and exciting information about exhibitions organized that will include our pages. This is an open event, so all are welcome. 4:00–5:00 p.m. Light refreshments will be served. Archives & Special Collections Seminar room.

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Behind the Archives Door: Alicia Bailey presents “Artists Books on the Road” Monday, September 11, 4 p.m., Archives & Special Collections Seminar Room

AliciaBailey_blogDenver based curator and artists’ book dealer Alicia Bailey (abecedarian Gallery) will be giving an informal Artists Books on the Road presentation. The presentation will provide a unique opportunity to learn more about this engaging and intimate approach to art making through hands on interaction and Q & A. 4:00–5:00 p.m. light refreshments and an informal lecture. Archives & Special Collections Seminar room.

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SPLC Campus Resources to Counter the Alt-Right Movement

Callout_altResourceThe Southern Poverty Law Center has created a new set of campus resources to counter the alt-right movement.

SPLC releases campus guide to countering ‘alt-right’ – With college students returning to class in the coming weeks, the SPLC released a new guide today that advises them on how to respond when speakers associated with the growing white nationalist, or “alt-right,” movement, appear on campus.

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Behind the Archives Door: Thursday, September 7, David Wertheimer, “Collecting Incunabula”, 4 p.m., Archives & Special Collections Seminar room

David-andBooksThursday, September 7:  Behind the Archives Door: Collecting Incunabula. David Wertheimer, an avid collector of early printed books and a Director at the Gates Foundation, will share his story of collecting. Many of the books that he owns, all printed before 1502, will be available for viewing. 4:00–5:00 p.m. light refreshments and an informal lecture. Archives & Special Collections Seminar room.

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Behind the Archives Door: A Conversation with Clarissa Sligh, Tuesday, September 5, 5:30-7 p.m., Collins Library


“TheProposal” (2012) Artist Book by Clarissa Sligh

Join us for a conversation with visual artist and social activist Clarissa Sligh. For over 30 years, Sligh has woven together the cultural, historical, personal and political to explore concepts of memory and transmutation, and perceptions of boundaries and identity: themes that have roots in her own experiences. Her photo-text images, artists’ books and installations have been exhibited in places such as The Museum of Modern Art and the Jewish Museum, New York, NY, Walker Art Center and the Minnesota Center for Book Arts, Minneapolis, MN, The National Gallery of Art and Corcoran Gallery of Art and the National African American Museum, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC. The Archives & Special Collections holds six of Sligh’s artists’ books, which will be available for viewing.

Two books on view here in the Equal Justice exhibition.
An interesting podcast to listen to: Facing America’s History of Racial Violence

Clarissa is joined by Kim Purser, an artist, poet and teacher she met while at the Penland School of Crafts in the mid-nineties. Kim is a photographer and book artist and has worked with Clarissa on many projects. She is currently employed as a clinical director working with young people and professionals at Eliada Homes in Asheville. In 2005, she taught Clarissa how to fold cranes and has been helping her fold cranes ever since. Her academic degrees include the BA, BFA, MA, and MSW. 5:30–7:00 p.m. (Reception outside the Archives & Special Collections, 5:30–6:00 p.m.) Talk and questions 6:00–7:00 p.m., in the Archives & Special Collections Seminar Room, Collins Library.

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Mare Made Artist Reception, Thursday, September 14, 4:30-6:30 p.m., Collins Library

Maremade_forBlogThursday, September 14, 2017
4:30–6:30 p.m.
(Informal Remarks by Mare at 5:30 p.m.)
Collins Library
August 21, 2017 – January 19, 2018.

Mare Made, spans over 4 decades of the work of local artist Mare Blocker. Teacher, mentor, writer, illustrator, printer and book artist, Mare Blocker’s work incorporates wit, humor, personal reflection and commentary about our world using a variety of techniques, formats and materials. In her own words: “In 1979, I made my first trip to the Special Collections Library at the University of Washington, which literally, changed the pathway of my life. I realized that one form, the book, could encompass my interdisciplinary passions. This was my epiphany, and I have been a book artist maremade-1since. I purchased my first printing press, a Vandercook 219 and founded the MKimberly Press in 1984. Teaching affords me the opportunity to print with my students, while teaching them to print. Our exchanges have informed my work, and added another layer to my interdisciplinary practice. I like to think of the lab as a contemporary medieval workshop. When everyone is working, and the presses are running, there is a feeling of community that is magical. Nothing can prepare you for that first proof, that alchemical moment of turning lead into words on a finely printed page. I feel honored to be able to pass this tradition on.”

Collins Library is honored to showcase the career of Mare Blocker in this retrospective exhibition that runs through January showcasing her early work as well as the most recent project My Beloved Community Dictionary Project. For this project Mare invited 200 of her closet friends to contribute a 6 x 8 linoleum block of a single word that will be woven together to form a community quilt of words. According to Mare, “I have always been drawn to illustrated dictionaries. I love their little pictures, charts and lists of cities and places. I’ve been contemplating a dictionary project for years, and now that I have my power press up and running smoothly, it’s time to jump into it.” Mare received her M.F.A., University of Idaho, 2006 and her  B.F.A, in Ceramic Sculpture, University of Washington, 1982. She is a member of the faculty of Pacific Lutheran University and serves as an Assistant Professor of Art and Design. She teaches classes in the art of the book and printmaking and was instrumental in established the Thornily Printing Center at PLU last spring. She is the recipient of numerous awards and accolades and you can read more about her work by visiting her blog site.

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Library Search Tool Primo Gets an Upgrade in early August!

PrimoboxThe Collins Memorial Library search tool Primo is getting an upgrade in early August as part of a collaborative regional effort by the Orbis Cascade Alliance, the Pacific Northwest consortium of academic libraries that also delivers the popular resource sharing program Summit.  The library’s Primo search box on the library home page will have a new look based on feedback from focus groups.
Benefits of the new search tool include:

  • Mobile-friendly: Smoother navigation on smaller-screen mobile devices.
  • Citation trails: Additional bibliographic information about resource citations in other research.
  • More visible related readings: Recommended items related to a search result and the designation of an article as peer reviewed are better highlighted.
  • Cleaner design: Icon images and font changes improve how search results appear and make finding them easier. Items borrowed from Collins, Summit and interlibrary loan will automatically transfer to the new Primo interface. To learn more about the changes, visit the library guide at
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Presentation by Book Artist Diane Jacobs, Monday, July 31, 12:30-1:30 p.m., Library Room 020

object n. object v. by Diane Jacobs from

object n. object v. by Diane Jacobs. (

Diane Jacobs has been making artist’s books under her imprint Scantron Press for 20 years. Her work is held in distinguished collections including The Getty Museum, SFMOMA, and the Walker Art Center, among others. She holds an MFA in printmaking from San Francisco State University and has taught book arts and letterpress printing in the Bay Area, at the Oregon College of Art & Craft, and in the Women’s Studio Workshop’s own Summer Art Institute.

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A Conversation with Paper Maker Velma Bolyard, Tuesday, July 11, 6:30-8 p.m., Collins Library Rm. 020

CALLOUT_VelmaBolyardVelma Bolyard is a fiber, paper and book artist working with mostly locally gathered materials for textile, paper, and book making. She recently retired from 25 years of teaching special education in alternative public school settings. Her passion is to make art that explores environment and the connection to place, and teach others technique to inspire them to push their own work. Currently she is exploring the properties and personality of flax/linen and milkweed and is working on a larger project, Hortus Siccus about plants and place. She writes a blog, Wake Robin about her work and life. Velma will discuss her work as a papermaker and artist and share examples of her work.

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Puget Sound Book Artists Awards 2017

The evening of June 8, 2017 was a fine one at the Collins Library. Artists, friends, librarians, and other interested visitors came for the reception and awards announcements for the 7th annual Puget Sound Book Artists exhibition—Northwest Musings. There was delightful food, gentle harp music and, of course, the 47 beautiful handmade books. Three awards were presented this year: the Curators’ Award, the Collins Memorial Library Award, and the Award of Excellence. All of the jurors who selected the winners mentioned the difficulty of choosing a single work from so many excellent entries. The reasons for each award choice are detailed below. We congratulate the winners and, in fact, all who worked hard to make this exhibit a success.

Patricia Chupa – Thuja Plicata

Patricia Chupa – Thuja Plicata

Curators Award

Patricia Chupa – Thuja Plicata
Mache & painted paper on a cardboard armature; Woven paper; Feathers, beads, twig, lichen, duff, wasp paper, ceramic button; Wood board; Book boxes housing post-bound & leather/paper-bound journals
Created: 2017

The great diversity of materials, techniques and forms used in the works in this show truly impressed our team of curators. The artists thoughtfully explored the stated theme of the exhibit “Northwest Musings”, calling on their individual memories and their knowledge of history and sense of place to give form to their books.

As a team we struggled with choosing our single award winner because there was such a richness of presentations. Ultimately we decided on Patricia Chupa’s work “Thuja Plicata”. It is a complex piece that at first glance evokes the very nature of the Pacific Northwest with the two images of a strong tree and a traditional conical woven rain hat. Both of these images allude to protection, shelter, stability, and Pacific Northwest history. A closer look reveals that it is two small books that are “protected” by the tree and hat, and that each book is a journal containing drawings, personal observations and stories. One journal is actually placed within the tree; the other at a short distance from it. Immediately there is an implied dialogue between the two and a sense that the whole work is a tribute to a cherished relationship.

Thus, what is highly personal–the journals– and what is archetypal symbol–Thuja Plicata–merge into one unique book that provides us with a feeling of exploration and discovery.

Curators: Jan Ward, Dorothy McCuistion, Sally Alger, Bonnie Larson

 MalPina Chan - 46.79°N 121.74°W: Mapping the Glaciers of Mt. Rainier.

MalPina Chan – 46.79°N 121.74°W: Mapping the Glaciers of Mt. Rainier.

Collins Award

MalPina Chan – 46.79°N 121.74°W: Mapping the Glaciers of Mt. Rainier.
Structure/Medium/Materials: Turkish Map Binding, Arches Text Wove Japanese Kozo-shi, Archival inks
Created: 2017

Our judges had a hard time choosing, because there were so many beautiful works. The PSBA members are amazingly talented. Our final decision came down to which book was most applicable to classes on the University of Puget Sound campus, and we quickly thought of several specific classes that could use MalPina Chan’s 46.79°N 121.74°W: Mapping the Glaciers of Mt. RainierMapping the Glaciers engages the place and space of Mt. Rainier in the Pacific Northwest landscape and imagination. This book entices the viewer with a Turkish Map Fold construction that opens up to reveal a map and handwriting from Abby Williams Hill. The detail of adding maps to the back side of the folds completes the charm. Mapping the Glaciers is an evocative and inventive representation of one of Washington’s iconic natural features, recognizable by its persistently glaciated peak. Using an old map of the mountain’s glaciers, the artist forces us to address the centrality of the mountain. At the same time, the older map raises questions about climate change in the viewer’s mind:  where are the glaciers today? The map itself is framed on both sides with excerpts from the diary of Abby Williams Hill, an artist and progressive thinker who herself was deeply engaged with notions of place and the Mountain. The juxtaposition of map and words from the early twentieth century invites us to explore our own relationship to Mt. Rainier. This work situates its viewer in a variety of ways, through its mingling of topography with the personal writings of Abby Williams Hill, and invites questions about how our experiences with the natural world both shape and are shaped by it. We envision Mapping the Glaciers engaging students and researchers working with the Hill Collection, focusing on our local region, and in courses from multiple disciplines.

– Peggy Burge. Coordinator of Teaching, Learning and Digital Humanities
– Katy Curtis, Humanities Librarian
– Hilary Robbeloth, Systems and Discovery Librarian.

Suze Woolf Pine Beetle Book, Vol III: Bug Ruts

Suze Woolf, Pine Beetle Book, Vol III: Bug Ruts

Award of Excellence

Suze Woolf
Pine Beetle Book, Vol III: Bug Ruts
Structure/Medium/Materials: Pine-beetle-bored bark in epoxy resin, laser-cut iron-oxide-dyed felt pages, wire-edge-bound, wooden “worry” beads
Created: 2016

Juror’s Statement:

I have had the wonderful opportunity to view the PSBA juried members’ exhibition over the past seven years and have to say that each year the exhibition has gotten stronger. This year, fine bindings, evocative imagery and sculptural, organic qualities are prevalent in the artist books that are exhibited in the Collins Library. Imagery and meaning is tied in with craft through a variety of scales and diversity of themes related to the Pacific Northwest. Various structures include Turkish map folds, flag accordions, as well as stab–bound, cloth-bound, and piano–hinged books. Imagery is produced through wide means, including photography, stamps, screenprint, digital techniques, and dying.

It was very difficult to choose the award of excellence. However, I found myself continuing to go back to a work where the materials were an integrated whole, where form and meaning were united. Suze Woolf’s Pine Beetle Book, Vol III: Bug Ruts is part of her related series of books that reference bug trails in the woods. This shaped book is welcoming, the materials a combination of warm browns.

The exposed binding consists of brown threads that wrap around metal pins; threads are left to trail off, echoing the linear trails seen on the felt interior pages. Worry beads are attached to the ends of the threads, which add weight and keep the threads separated.

Bug Ruts feels good in the hands. The cover is a piece of organically shaped tree bark that has been bore into by beetles, then covered in clear resin. The uneven resin suggests water or tree sap. On the verso, the rough texture of bark acts as the endsheets, quite visually different than the energetic line veining on the cover. The organic edges of the cover and leafs allow one to wrap their fingers around them, as one might with a worry stone.

The shape of the front and back covers differ; in between there is a slow transformation of the shape of the pages, an echo­ of the exterior. Flexible felt pages are contained within the book. Rust dye is used on the soft pages to mark beetles’ tracks. Gestural in quality, these markings are evidence of the insect’s path. The thick pages add a sense of solidity that combines with the softness of the felt material. The pages turn easily.

Suze Woolf has preserved the beetle’s journey, capturing a part of the larger whole of our ecosystem. Time, nature, and movement are captured in this satisfying artist book.

Juror: Janet Marcavage, Printmaker and Professor at The University of Puget Sound


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