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Re: [BKARTS] "Artists' Books" in Literature Departments

A.C. Berkheiser wrote:

>Why "Book Art (and not Book Arts)"

It's appropriate that the query comes from London, because I learned this
at Camberwell while I was adjunct faculty in 1978-79 (during my tenure as
US/UK Bicentennial Fellow). When I arrived it was named "Camberwell School
of Arts and Crafts." They were in the process of trying to change the name
to "Camberwell School of Art and Crafts." The concept was that Art is
singular and Crafts are plural. It was an attempt to get away from the 19th
century concept of Industrial Arts, and to inculcate the students with the
notion that they use the crafts they learn to make art.

The administration did change signage to reflect this, but a google search
of the internet reveals very little documentation, other than the online
resumes of some people who were students during that period.

As the politics of this evolved everything else was changing at the ILEA
(Inner London Education Authority), the vocational courses in printing and
typographical design were discontinued at Camberwell in 1981, and the
department closed. In 1989 Camberwell was renamed Camberwell College of
Arts, and the courses were organized into two schools, one of Applied and
Graphic Arts and the other of Art History and Conservation.

At the Center for Book Arts we teach the "arts" of bookmaking, and we mount
exhibitions of book art. The paper I presented at the SHARP conference in
2001 was titled "25 Years: The Book Art Movement 1974-1999." It is an "art"
movement, not an "arts" movement.  The paper is online at


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