Exhibition: Women's Artists’ Books: Hand, Voice & Vision

The exhibit highlights the creative work of women during the past 30 years at the Women’s Studio Workshop in Rosendale, NY. Neilson Level 3.

Barbara Leoff Burge. None of Your Damn Business. 2010.

2011 Dates Exhibition: Hand, Voice & Vision
Sep. 9 - Dec. 20
Book Arts Gallery
Neilson Library, Level 3
Oct.20, 4-6 pm Gallery Tour

This exhibition features forty artists’ books selected from more than two hundred works produced between 1979 and 2009. The books are quite varied in shape, size, illustration technique, and theme. Many of the books are three-dimensional, challenging and expanding the concept of the book form. There is a book featuring Chinese women’s secret language, “Nushu,” which bears an uncanny resemblance to an Islamic script primarily penned by men. There are two books—each containing a sculptural cast paper arm of the author—which preserve the memories of two survivors of Nazi concentration camps during World War II.  Another artist created a book containing only the punctuation marks in great works of literature.

Tana Kellner and Ann Kalmbach, two of the co-founders of the Women's Studio Workshop, will lead a gallery tour Thursday, October 20, 4-6 pm, Neilson, level 3. Refreshments will be served.

71125: Fifty Years of Silence, Eva Kellner’s Story. 1992

Tatana Kellner. 71125: Fifty Years of Silence, Eva Kellner’s Story. 1992.

Women’s Studio Workshop is an artist’s workspace founded in 1974 as an alternative space in which artists could both create new work and share skills and ideas. The four founders—Ann Kalmbach, Tatana Kellner, Anita Wetzel, and Barbara Leoff Burge—established programs that were centered on the artistic process and often informed by feminist values. Some recurring themes in Women’s Studio Workshop books are personal and cultural narrative, self-image issues, and political observations. Women’s Studio Workshop has afforded artistic opportunities for emerging, mid-career, and mature artists. The books for Hand, Voice & Vision were chosen by Kathleen Walkup, professor of book arts and director of the Book Art Program at Mills College in California.

This exhibition at Smith is sponsored by the Mortimer Rare Book Room, Neilson Library. All of the books on display are on loan from Women’s Studio Workshop. However, Smith owns copies of seven of the artists’ books on display in this exhibition. They are available for use in the Mortimer Rare Book Room, along with numerous other contemporary books created by female and male artists.


For more information, please contact:

Mortimer Rare Book Room
(413) 585-2906