Let The Good Times Roll

Good Times Roll Mural

It’s a lo sun in December but we want to show off our new mural. Recently Noah Lentz painted this wonderful mural on our back wall. We are loving the art and the message! Thanks Noah!

BookWorks gallery is filled with locally printed posters, handmade journals, zines and prints by Woolly Press, Vandercooked Poetry broadsides, cards and more by local artists.

BookWorks also offers gift certificates which can be used year-round for studio classes in letterpress, bookbinding, printmaking. Please see our Workshop page for upcoming classes. http://www.ashevillebookworks.com/workshops/

a community resource for print and book arts located in West Asheville, North Carolina. Through classes, exhibits, lectures, and signature events – BookOpolis + PrintOcracy, Asheville BookWorks has developed a national reputation as a fine book arts and print facility. Founded in 2004 by Laurie Corral, Asheville BookWorks has become a gathering place for individuals with an interest in handmade books, printmaking and letterpress. BookWorks provides space, equipment and technical support for artistic exploration, collaboration and the sharing of knowledge.


Landlooker II by Anne Beck

ON VIEW through October
428 1/2 Haywood Rd, West Asheville

Karen Kunc Ephemera Woodcut and letterpress prints by Karen Kunc - artist Poems by Robert Pinsky, 2009

EPHEMERA – Woodcut and letterpress prints by Karen Kunc.
Poems by Robert Pinsky, 2009

Camaraderie is a show about the long-term relationship of book and print. A chance to observe and consider the inescapably intertwined history of the disciplines of Book Arts and Printmaking. A look at how these approaches to making intersect, mingle, and diverge in the work of a diverse group of contemporary artists.

What is a book? What defines a print? For an artist skilled in the techniques of both book and print, how are decisions of form and content approached? For artist Anne Beck, “the book is printed matter to be reworked, annotated beyond the boundaries of the matrix – a participatory object.” Artist Kalmia Strong views “books foremost as generative social objects, choosing to either create books and book-objects that are made in collaboration with others, or take as their subject (and often, objective) discourse, presence, and interaction.”

Camaraderie celebrates the relationship between book and print by considering the works of a small section works by artists from the larger Book Arts and Printmaking community. Participating artists include: Anne Beck, Laurie Corral, Allison Dennis, Gwen Diehn, Karen Kunc, Laura Ladendorf, Dyann Myers, Kristen Necessary, Carol Norby, Rachel Singel, and Kalmia Strong.


Rachel Singel is an Assistant Professor at the University of Louisville. She grew up on a small farm outside of Charlottesville, Virginia. Her work is inspired by what she sees in nature. Rachel has participated in residencies at the Penland School of Crafts, the Venice Printmaking Studio, and the Scuola Internazionale di Grafica. She will be returning to Venice to study at the Scuola Internazionale di Grafica in summer 2016.

Kristen Necessary currently lives in Brevard, NC where she works as a studio artist, educator, and owner + operator of Starfangled Press. Specializing in Relief, Intaglio, Screen Print, and Drawing, Kristen received her MFA in Printmaking from The University of Iowa in 2011, and her BFA in Painting + Printmaking from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2008.

Almost 40 Years in Purgatory

Esther K Smith and Dikko Faust of Purgatory Pie Press
Esther K Smith and Dikko Faust of Purgatory Pie Press

Esther K Smith and Dikko Faust of Purgatory Pie Press



Limited Editions and Artist Books by Purgatory Pie Press
proprietors – Esther K Smith and Dikko Faust

Asheville BookWorks is excited to announce the upcoming exhibition featuring a retrospective of works by Purgatory Pie Press, located in New York City. One of the longest running artist/presses in the world, PPP was founded by Dikko Faust, who named it in 1977 when he spilled (pied) a lot of very small type while studying with Walter Hamady. Instead of leaving town Faust chose to pay his dues in Purgatory sorting p’s & q’s (and b’s & d’s–and all the uppercase and lowercase letters and punctuation. Faust moved to New York City to work at Center for Book Arts and in 1980, Esther K Smith joined him. Their wedding invitation was their first print collaboration.

PPP has collaborated with more than 100 artists and writers–making limited editions and artist books. Always focusing on letterpress printing from hand-set wood and metal type and typographic elements– but also making photoengravings as needed–and printing collagraph–from all kinds of substrates. Dikko’s current series is hardware prints and mathematical moires. Before this, he made a series of prints from typographic elements–patterns derived from archeological and vernacular sources

Artistic director Esther K Smith, after designing for theatre, chose to stitch books instead of costumes– a less ephemeral medium. Smith became interested in the simple printers’ bindings and pre-printing book structures. This led to her teaching a long-running artist books class at Cooper Union. And that led to her writing HOW TO MAKE BOOKS which has brought so many people into the field.

This anniversary exhibit is a survey/retrospective of their work from the very beginning thru the future of Purgatory Pie Press.


Esther will each teach a one day workshop at Asheville BookWorks. Registration is accepted either by phone (828-255-8444) or online at ashevillebookworks.com.

Magic Books and Paper Toys – July 9. 10am – 5pm with Esther K Smith


The Elegant Statement

Locus by Macy Chadwick

The Elegant Statement exhibition is on view at Asheville Bookworks through April 22.

Featuring 27 book artists and letterpress printers working across the United States, curated by Lisa Beth Robinson, this collection of books and broadsides exemplify the relationship between material and meaning; each magnifies the other. Some artists are driven by content, some by structure, but all works demonstrate a deep respect and passion for our craft. Works will be on display until April 22, 2016.

Artists included in the exhibition are: Brian Borchardt (WI), Macy Chadwick (CA), Maureen Forys (CA), Caren Heft (WI), Jennie Hinchcliff (CA), Josh Hockensmith (NC), Sarah Hulsey (MA), Ned Irvine (NC), Ellen Knudsen (FL), Barbara McFadyen (NC), Jeffrey Morin (WI), Carrie Ann Plank (CA), Kristin Rothrock (NC), Julie Sittler (WI), Eileen Wallace (GA), Mark Brueggeman (WI), Mary Bruno (MN), Terrence Chouinard (TN), John Cutrone (FL), Dan Elliott (NC), Landon Godfrey (NC), Gary Hawkins (NC), Diana Hoover (WI), Craig Malmrose (NC), Jennifer Manzella (GA), Paul Moxon (AL), and Lisa Beth Robinson (NC).

There will also be a special visit by the Itinerant Printer, traveling letterpress printer… For more info – https://www.facebook.com/itinerantprinter

Our gallery is always free and open to the public during our regular hours.

Locus by Macy Chadwick

Locus is a personal geography about taking a leap into a new phase of life, and existing in the space between the known past and the unknown future. In this exploratory realm, anything is possible. The narrator considers her past, locates herself in the present and finally embraces the enigmatic future. by Macy Chadwick
Relief and pressure printing on Mohawk and Gampi Shi papers. Hybrid french doors/accordion book in hard cover. Housed in a clam shell box.
12.5 x 10.5 closed
Limited edition of 40.
$1150 each.

Ingress/Egress by Ellen Knudson

Ingress / Egress is an artist’s book that contemplates the design of artists’ books. The intent of the piece is to encourage ideation on the theme “books are”. The six French-fold books use geometry, visual design, text, and imagery to investigate topics such as “Books Are Architecture” and “Books Are Collections”. Books are letterpress printed on Japanese mulberry paper from Boxcar Press photopolymer plates. The translucency of the mulberry paper produces layers of reading in each book, and the potential interaction of layers among the entire suite of books. by Ellen Knudson 6”W x 9”H x 3/4”D. 2015

Lisa Beth Robinson – Curator, The Elegant Statement
Lisa Beth Robinson is the proprietor of Somnambulist Tango Press where she makes artists books, fine art, and collaborative chapbooks and broadsides. Robinson is a mixed-media artist who is transforming materials physically and psychologically in the pursuit of understanding the idea of reading alongside interpersonal, spiritual, and environmental relationships and their global impact. Her media include handmade paper, letterpress printing, collage, and her innovative processes employ principles of physics, botany, and Jungian psychology.
Her books and bookworks visualize the relationship between language and experience, making connections between disassociated objects and concerns. Her primary research interest at this time includes colony collapse disorder, both in and of itself and as a metaphor for global sociopolitical acts. She is extremely interested in the interconnectedness of things.
Robinson serves as an assistant professor at East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina, and serves on the national board of the College Book Art Association. Her degrees are from the Johnston Center at the University of Redlands and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Recently, her work has been purchased by institutions such as Yale University and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

The Riso Museum


“The Machine” 5 color risograph designed and printed by Woolly Press founders Mica Mead and Colin Sutherland.

The Riso Museum showcases the Risograph (Riso) printing process and celebrates  Riso culture and its users. A stencil-based digital press, the risograph was employed in the copy rooms of the late 90’s corporate environment. Churches, law firms, and other small to medium organizations used the Riso as a method to produce large inexpensive runs of one to two color editions. The Risograph slowly disappeared from this landscape due to the influx of laser printers and other modern techniques, but has relocated to design studios, art departments, and DIY-house basements.

On view will be Risograph artifacts, objects from the printing process, as well as works from a variety of Risograph presses from around the world. Emphasis is placed on the Riso as an object and pieces that exhibit its idiosyncrasies. Selected works include Riso print guides, color charts, artistic prints, and publications. The Riso Museum is curated by Mica Mead and Colin Sutherland of Woolly Press, an Asheville-based Risograph design and print shop.


Ladies of Letterpress Book Signing and Exhibition

LoLP Book Cover2

Ladies of Letterpress, the newest book co-authored by Jessica White and Kseniya Thomas features works in letterpress by artists from across the USA. The book contains over 80 removable posters.

Opening reception: Saturday, December 5, 2015 4 – 6pm
Exhibition is free and open to the public

On view: December 5, 2015  through February 29, 2016

Asheville BookWorks is opening a new print and letterpress exhibition featuring artist/members of Ladies of Letterpress. Jessica White and Kseniya Thomas, founders of LofL, have published a new book, The Ladies of Letterpress and Jessica will be onsite to sign books. Opening events also include letterpress demos and several artists will be on hand to discuss their work. The exhibition features prints by artists whose work is in the book. LofL remains on view at BookWorks through February 29.

THE BOOK – The Ladies of Letterpress features the best work of the members of Ladies of Letterpress, an international organization that champions the work of women printers. Valuable as a handy resource, it includes more than 300 pieces, from greeting cards to broadsides and posters, printed in a variety of type and illustration styles. Each piece is accompanied by details of paper, inks, and press used in its printing, as well as a profile of its printer. Whether you’re drawn to elegant greeting cards, humorous note cards, or calendars and posters, you’re sure to find inspiration in this volume. And when you do, there are eighty detachable pages just begging to be pinned up.

THE AUTHORS – Kseniya Thomas runs Thomas-Printers in Carlisle, PA. Jessica C. White works as a studio artist and runs the Heroes & Criminals Press in Asheville, NC. They are the cofounders of Ladies of Letterpress.

LoLP book spread2

Ladies of Letterpress book features over 80 removable prints.

LofL spread1

Ladies of Letterpress book features over 80 removable prints.

PrintOcracy: PLAY!

PrintOcracy logo

Asheville BookWorks announces PrintOcracy 2015/PLAY!, a printmaking portfolio exchange featuring participating artists from across the US. The title of the portfolio, PLAY!, refers to objects that ignite interactivity and imagination, that express the act of playing itself. This print exchange focuses on the subject—and subjectivity—of toys. Participants have been asked to submit 12 editions of 11 x 14-inch prints. Eleven prints will be redistributed as a portfolio exchange with other participants in a random selection process. Traditional and contemporary printmaking processes, including intaglio, relief printing, screen printing, and lithography, will be represented.

Click here for the entire portfolio of prints on our facebook page.

Colossal Cuts: Steamroller Prints

Colossal Cuts –
Steamroller Prints from 2013 and 2015 are on view

Steamroller gallery

Steamroller gallery – prints from the 2015 steamroller print run on view at BookWorks

About Colossal Cuts

How do you make a print that is too big to fit on a press? Use a steamroller, naturally! That’s what we’re doing at Asheville BookWorks. Look on in amazement as local printmakers print their giant block prints—3 x 3’—using only their bare hands (and a steamroller). Printing takes place on Saturday, September 19 between 1 and 5 PM in the driveway just outside BookWorks. Carolina CAT is making this event possible with a generous loan of the steamroller. Steamroller prints will be on view at BookWorks through November 25.

For a glimpse of what this all looks like – watch a video of the 2013 event to see the process (jump to 0:57):

It’s About Time: A Workbook for the Working Person

ILSSA workbook project
ILSSA members explore TIME in this interactive workbook project.


OPENING RECEPTION – JULY 10, 2015 from 6 – 8pm
Asheville BookWorks • 428 1/2 Haywood Rd • West Asheville
On View July 10 through August 31

“Time. What is it?” “How do you save it?” “How do you spend it?”“Can you make more of it?” ILSSA It’s About Time: A Workbook For The Working Person asks these questions and 24 more. In return, the questions are visually and verbally explored by 48 participating members of Impractical Labor in Service of the Speculative Arts (ILSSA), an organization for makers who use obsolete technology (OT) in conceptual or experimental ways. The completed workbooks comprise the exhibition.

ILSSA is a socially engaged art project consisting of a Union and a Research Institute. Founded in 2008 by Bridget Elmer and Emily K. Larned, ILSSA is an ongoing and evolving publishing and social practice platform committed to investigating the value of labor. This workbook is the most recent in a series of projects that ask members to reflect upon their process, and to share this reflection with the public.

“I find it really difficult to stop looking at the workbooks. Our members are really, really funny, smart, insightful, talented, and generous, and the longer you look at the workbooks, the more you want to read them all, page by page. And I think that is the value of the show: it asks visitors to settle in, and reflect upon their own relationship with time,” says Larned. “The theme of time emerged from an earlier project, the State of the ILSSA Union (2012), in which we surveyed our membership on their working conditions as artists. Many members mentioned that the greatest challenge facing their practice was time. The nature of impractical labor is slow. Impractical labor comprises really diverse media — but by definition it prioritizes process over product. Process takes time. You could say the medium of impractical labor is time.”

ILSSA uses obsolete technology because the current economic crisis is a result in part of an over-extension of credit, a cultural obsession with the new, and a devaluation of means. It is time to reconsider how we live and why we live. Embracing what we already have and reapproaching it creatively is an essential part of this reconsideration. Sustainability, affordability, accessibility; controlling the means of production; opportunities for fresh solutions due to severe restrictions; labor-intensive processes which highlight the inverse relationship of meaningful work and remuneration; a prioritization of process over product: these are the values shared by many, if not all, forms of OT. In addition, ILSSA engages Marshall McLuhan’s notion that OT, once freed from serving its original purpose, becomes an artform.

To learn more about ILSSA, visit www.impractical-labor.org.

Tease It to Jesus: A Portfolio of Dolly Parton Prints

Dolly Parton Prints

See the works of 35 printmakers created in honor of one of country music’s leading ladies.

Tease it to Jesus is a portfolio of 35 printed portraits of Dolly Parton, designed and printed by some of the nation’s finest printmakers. The portfolio includes artists such as John Hitchcock, Sage Perrott, Erika Adams, Kathryn and Andy Polk and Brett Anderson. Letterpress, screen print, lithography are among the processes used to create this amazing array of fun and colorful tributes to the little lady with the big hair.  Prints are for sale.

Tease It to Jesus was organized by Smoky Road Press for exhibition during the Southern Graphics Conference in March 2015 at UT-Knoxville, TN. It was also shown in Athens, GA. The prints will be on view alongside ILSSA’s – It’s About Time: Workbooks for the Working Person through August 29. Viewing is free and open to the public during BookWorks regular hours.