Ah Haa: Bookbinding Exhibition Opens 4/24

The American Academy of Bookbinding‘s national bookbinding exhibition, OPEN–SET, opens in the Ah Haa School’s Daniel Tucker Gallery on April 24 and runs through May 20, 2017.

This month, the Ah Haa School for the Arts unveils perhaps its most prestigious exhibition to date. The gallery show features one of the school’s lesser-known programs, The American Academy of Bookbinding.

OPEN–SET, the first international triennial competition and traveling exhibition of contemporary fine design bindings, is sponsored by the American Academy of Bookbinding and the Ah Haa School. The show opens Monday, April 24, in the Daniel Tucker Gallery at the Depot.

The OPEN–SET exhibition showcases 50 books and highlights excellence in bookbinding craftsmanship and design concept interpretation.

The exhibition is on display from April 24-May 20, with an official opening event and featured talk by artist, teacher, and bookbinder Monique Lallier on Tuesday, May 16, 5-8 p.m.

Former director and current instructor for AAB’s Fine Binding program, Lallier plans to talk about two of her own books, which are part of OPEN–SET. Attendees will learn more about her inspiration and process when creating beautiful, fine bindings coveted by collectors and included in rare book collections of prestigious museums throughout the world.

OPEN –SET features awards and acknowledgement in two categories: Participants were invited to bind a copy of the designated “SET” book (David Esslemont’s out-of-print “Inside the Book”); or bind a book of their choice in the “OPEN” category.

Entries were limited to one book per category. Binders from all levels and cultures were invited to participate, as the competition was not limited to citizens of the United States, nor to students or affiliates of AAB. Winners were selected by a blind jury of three professional binders: Eleanore Ramsey, David Esslemont, and Cathy Adelman.

With a traveling schedule that includes Denver, San Francisco, Iowa City, Boston, Austin, Seattle, and Salt Lake City, and Telluride, OPEN– SET has already received a wonderful response in the larger cities and venues. Book enthusiasts who visit Ah Haa’s exhibit will walk away with a better understanding of and appreciation for what constitutes a well-made and artistically designed book and, at the same time, get a glimpse into what goes on at Telluride’s own American Academy of Bookbinding.

More about the American Academy of Bookbinding: 

Founded in 1993 as a program of the Ah Haa School for the Arts by Tini Miura, Einen Miura, and Daniel Tucker, the American Academy of Bookbinding is an internationally known, degree-oriented bookbinding school that offers book enthusiasts of all levels the opportunity to initiate and improve their skills in a generous and supportive learning environment.

The Academy conducts intensive courses in the fine art of leather binding, book restoration, repair, preservation practices, and related subjects. The goal of the Academy is to provide a level of excellence in bookbinding education and, for those interested, graduate professional-level binders with the knowledge and skills to produce the highest quality work and the ability to pass on those skills to the next generation.

The Academy is unique in the United States in its ability to offer comprehensive, diploma-granting programs in the study of bookbinding and book preservation, taught by some of the most experienced and highly regarded book artists and conservators in the world.

Many introductory classes are offered for students with little or no experience. Others can further advance their studies and enter a program that culminates with a diploma either in Fine Leather Binding or Integrated Studies. Students can also pursue both tracks.

Training and practice at the American Academy of Bookbinding provides attendees with a level of skill and understanding that ensures quality and confidence in their work and should help to further their careers.

For more information on OPEN –SET and the American Academy of Bookbinding, go to bookbindingacademy.org.

For specifics on the gallery exhibit, contact the Ah Haa School at 970-728-3886.

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