Showcase Nov 2009




by Suzette McAvoy

Contemporary practitioners of a centuries-old craft

Zooks Press, An I For Red by Susan Weinz, 2009, letterpress book (wood, linoleum, polymer), 7” x 5” closed





David C. Wolfe | Wolfe Editions | [email protected]

“Letterpress printing is a hands-on process. One has to use their hands and eyes. It takes time and tedious effort to be successful. There is nothing virtual about it.”

Wolfe Editions, The Zoomy Trail by Dave Gerard, 2009, CD packaging, 1,000 copies, each unique (color woodcut and lead type on recycled cardboard, tri-folded and bound with rubber band); design in collaboration with Steve Bowden,




Scott Vile | Ascensius Press |

“Letterpress printing with hot-metal type connects us with the printers of the past four centuries, who, trained in the ‘black arts,’ created books that set the standards for the future.”

Ascensius Press, A Monster Salmon by Donal C. O’Brien, Jr., letterpress, Linotype Fairfield (handmade Czechoslovakian paper, with mounted fly); bound by Gray Parrot, Hancock, Maine





David Wall | The Applecart Press |

“Though I’ve been working with the letterpress process now for more than twenty years, I still experience the same little rush that I felt when I first held a letterpress-printed sheet up to a raking light. The clean, crisp impression of a simple line of text—especially when printed in black ink on a soft-surfaced paper—can be exquisite. I’ve seen a lot of beautifully printed pieces produced by other means, but no other printing process has ever given me that same visceral thrill.”

The Applecart Press, detail of reply envelope for Wong-Fein wedding, 2009, 10-piece bilingual (Mandarin Chinese and English) wedding invitation suite (tan and red soy-based inks on Strathmore 25% cotton natural white/wove finish paper)





Susan Weinz | Zooks Press |

“There is great satisfaction in printing a page of well-arranged type. Although the layout can be designed on a computer and the results then printed from a photo-polymer plate, it is very different from arranging letterforms of wood or lead. For me the attraction of hand setting type is its immediacy, physicality, and potential sense of play.”

Zooks Press, An I For Red by Susan Weinz, 2009, letterpress book, page fold-out







Megan O’Connell | The Bracket[t] Press |

Composing by hand offers a unique set of limitations that I absolutely thrive under. The rigor of the medium and the unrivaled visual and tactile qualities of a letterpress-printed page continually engage. It is exhilarating to draw upon historical forms while reinventing the future.”

Bracket[t] Press, Un Coup de DES, identity package for Creative Material Group, by Megan O’Connell, card and envelope (wood and foundry type on recycled paper), 5” x 7”



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