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On Saturday I ventured into the greater L.A. metro area to Carson, CA, the home of the International Printing Museum, host of the first L.A. Printers Fair.

fair flyer

fair flyer

This amazing museum is chock-full of a collection of antique printing presses and printing equipment like none I have ever seen.  And if the machines were not captivating enough on their own, the sections of the museum and various presses were brought to life by the demonstrations and explanations of printers and museum docents, expert on the history and workings of the presses.

beauty of a press

beauty of a press

Gutenburg press

Gutenburg press

early linotype

early linotype

letterpress demo, changing the tympan

letterpress demo, changing the tympan

Heidelberg Windmill, wow!

Heidelberg Windmill, wow!

linotype machine operator

linotype machine operator

One of the old printing-related machines that was new to me was the linotype, a machine designed to cast lines of type exactly as typed in by the human operator on a keyboard.  By taking away the need to set each piece of type individually, the linotype became one of the forward leaps in typesetting invention.  For a $1 donation I got this fun keepsake from the show:

cool

cool

linotype machine

linotype machine

But perhaps my best keepsakes from the fair came from the presses of my good friend from graduate school, Cindy Iverson, who along with her husband Gary is the owner and proprietor of a wonderful book and paper business in Tempe, AZ, The Paper Studio.  Cindy gave me this great hand letterpressed poster that she designed and printed with woodtype on her handmade paper–I love it, and of course it is headed straight for my studio wall!

letterpress poster by Cindy Iverson

letterpress poster by Cindy Iverson

Gary and Cindy were one of dozens of vendors, from letterpress printers, to papermakers, book artists and book arts groups, to specialty suppliers, and other printing craftspeople offering up their wares.

The Paper Studio stall

The Paper Studio stall

Cindy and Gary, book and paper artists

Cindy and Gary, book and paper artists

I came away from the fair with a number of really interesting conversations and hand letterpressed business cards in my pocket, not to mention a few more treasures for myself– handmade paper, hand-tubed ink, and other useful tools, but best of all the chance to reconnect with one of my favorite artist friends.  It was a terrific event, one I hope to participate in one day down the road when I’ve got more of my own work to share.  Here’s to the first of many Printers Fairs!

For much more about the fair read the Paper Studio’s series of blog posts here!

old presses for sale, C & P

old presses for sale, C & P

good stuff!

good stuff!

Paper Studio stuff

Paper Studio papers

loteria card from Aardvark Press

loteria card from Aardvark Press

print shop reproduction

print shop reproduction

good listeners

good listeners

printing treasures

printing treasures

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