99% of the people I meet have never heard of book art.

During the course of conversation, the question inevitably comes up: What kind of art do you make? This is usually met with an initial pause or sigh or laugh while my mind tries to quickly condense this extremely broad and interdisciplinary field into a few sentences. I’ve been doing this for almost a decade now. It’s still hard.

You can find a description of book art in the about section of this website. Reading it may just pique your interest in this art form. But you’ll probably still find yourself wondering: So what is book art?

In this case, seeing is understanding.The best way to experience book art is to handle it yourself. Although I can’t physically put a book into your hands, I can show you images. Today I came across a wonderful video by Craft in America featuring Kathleen Walkup, the Director of the Book Art Program at Mills College. Here, Kathleen Walkup is showing and talking about a selection of artist’s books. It’s great because you can get a sense of the physicality of the book and its movement, which is lost in still images.

If you want to learn more, the Craft in America website has a great article called “The Craft of Paper and Book Arts.” It even discusses process, how one might possibly go about translating an idea into an artist’s book. The article also features Julie Chen, including videos about how she started in the field and her process. Julie’s work prominently features movable parts and sculptural elements–absolutely amazing! Julie is a well-known figure in the book arts community. Now you can “meet” her too!