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Library groups sponsor visit by bookmaking artists

Aug. 30, 2010

KALAMAZOO--A husband and wife team from California will share their love of artists' books during an upcoming talk and workshop in Kalamazoo.

Peter and Donna Thomas, who have been making artist's books for more than 30 years, are traveling the country in their version of a gypsy wagon, discussing and demonstrating how their work explores nontraditional book structures and shaped book objects that "marries content, form and the passage of time into a single unified artwork."

Peter will present a free, public talk called "Dodge Trucks or Gypsy Wagons: The Literary Book as a Work of Art," from 4 to 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 23, in the Van Deusen Room of the Kalamazoo Public Library, 315 S. Rose St., Kalamazoo.

The couple will follow that up with a workshop titled "Exploring Miniature Books: Alternative Structures," from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 25, in the Kalamazoo Book Arts Center, 326 W. Kalamazoo Ave. in Kalamazoo. The cost to attend is $75.

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Workshop - "Exploring Miniature Books"

With few exceptions, the Thomases make their own paper, and print and bind their books themselves. Peter does most of the writing while Donna does the illustrative art. Their books have been shown in individual and group exhibitions in the United States and abroad, and have been purchased for collections around the world.

One the most unusual examples of the couple's work is the series ukulele books Peter has made. During his talk, he will sing a song or two on while playing one of those books. Light refreshments will follow his presentation.

The event is being jointly sponsored jointly by the Friends of Kalamazoo Public Library and the Friends of the Western Michigan University Libraries.

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Media contact: Jeanne Baron, (269) 387-8400, jeanne.baron@wmich.edu

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