At the Crossroads: Living Letterform Traditions

  • October 12, 2012
  • 10:00 AM (CDT)
  • October 13, 2012
  • 6:30 PM (CDT)
  • Columbia College Chicago, Center for Book and Paper Arts

At the Crossroads: Living Letterform Traditions

American Printing History Association

37th Annual Conference

When Carl Sandburg described Chicago as the “City of the Big Shoulders,” he was probably not referring to foundry type, but to the work ethic and industry, which made this city a center of commerce and printing.

The conference will be held at Columbia College Chicago, located a mile from Lake Michigan, near the city’s original Printer’s Row. The area, active since the 1880s in design and printing, was home to the Inland Printer magazine, the Union Type Foundry, binderies, engravers and huge printing plants built by R.R. Donnelly and Rand McNally, among others. The Chicago region was also home to the Ludlow and Vandercook Companies and designers such as Oswald Cooper, Will Bradley, Frederic W. Goudy, and Robert Hunter Middleton. Although the printing industry is smaller, Chicago remains part of a continuing, vibrant book arts scene. Attendees will have the opportunity to sample some of Chicago’s cultural riches through walking tours and visits to sites such as the Newberry Library, which is celebrating its 125th anniversary, the University of Chicago libraries, the Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Center for Book and Paper Arts itself.

The keynote speaker of the conference will be Rick Valicenti, winner of the 2011 National Design Award in Communication Design from the Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum.

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