July 22, 2018
Every month I record a podcast episode for Paper Talk, an ongoing series of interviews featuring artists and professionals who are working in the field of hand papermaking.
Last month I was in Chicago where I had a conversation with Melissa Potter in the papermaking studio at Columbia College. Through her practice, which includes art making, writing, curating and teaching, Melissa focuses on traditions that are endangered, underpaid and under-recognized due to industrialization, war, gender bias, and globalization. We talk about her Quaker upbringing in New Jersey and how that instilled in her a desire to be an activist, and how she has expanded upon The Papermaker’s Garden (that I initiated at Dieu Donné Papermill in the mid 90’s), and has continued to develop it as a socially engaged practice.
On the podcast, Melissa also talks about Seeds in Service, a project she runs with collaborator Maggie Puckett. They are currently fundraising to publish a book about the first five years of the program that combines feminist and ecological concerns with the art of hand papermaking. An Illuminated Feminist Seed Bank is sure to be a good one – check it out!
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