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Essay from Columbia College Chicago Center for Book & Paper Arts catalogue



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          CENTRAL NEW YORK BOOK ARTS: TRADITIONAL TO INNOVATIVE
           See The Exhibition Online, And Order Your Catalog.
                      <http://www.philobiblon.com>
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Barb Harman asked that I post this essay to the list.  It was written by
Audrey Niffenegger our in-house muse, and is from our current class
catalogue. You can check out what else is in the catalogue by typing in:
bookandpaper.org.

Bill Drendel
Director
Columbia College Chicago Center for Book & Paper Arts

During the very last part of the twentieth century, people kept telling us
that the world was different, that everything had changed, that it's a
whole new paradigm out there, and we'd better get used to it. So now that
the world has changed, we're sort of surprised that everyone is surprised.
After all, it's a whole new paradigm out there. New rules. Think outside
the box. People are thinking.  Who can tell if they are in a box while they
do it? We think that the world is the world, and the more things change,
the more they end up looking a lot like other things that happened a while
back. It's hard to tell what is happening when you have a box on your head.
But a few things seem constant. There's always beauty and courage, even in
horror and ugliness. There's always creativity, even when making art seems
trivial in comparison to destruction. We think that in the end, it is
madness and chaos that are trivial; it is oppression and terror that are an
unaffordable luxury. Culture and learning and art are essential and artists
and scholars are all citizens of a nation together, beyond accidents of
geography and history. Please join us in making and learning and carrying
on the main work of humans, which is culture. We celebrate the future in
every book we bind, every print that rolls off our presses, every new sheet
of paper we pull from out vats. We are making things that embody our ideas,
that carry our ideas forward. You should, too. After all, it's a new world,
and anything is possible.

Audrey Niffenegger
Columbia College Chicago Center for Book and Paper Arts

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