Archive 2016

IMG_4249Really pleased to be able to contribute to DIY Cultures this year.  Although I couldn’t be there personally, Divya Osbon very kindly put together DIY Riso exhibition at DIY Cultures festival .

I submitted two copies of the same Chap Book made during a workshop at Hot Bed Press.

The books combines an earlier screen printed & photo-litho Chap Book exploring stories behind the First World War, such as the Richmond 16, conscientious objectors and the Christmas truce.

I will be exhibiting and selling the riso Chap Books ‘Gott Mit Uns’ at the Artists’ Book Market at BALTIC this weekend, retail £5 or the original Chap Book £10.

If you are interested in finding out more about Riso printing, also at the Artists’ Book Market will be Unbound #1 & #2 / Foundation Press with Nicola Singh and Zassō Fūkei Saturday 18  & 19  June 16.00-16.30 Level 1 Cube

Foundation Press present two new one-day print projects with artists Nicola Singh (Saturday) and Zassō Fūkei (Sunday). Working within the time limits of the market’s opening hours, participating artists will pursue their own visual language through the riso print process – designing and constructing two entirely printed stage sets that will host live performances each day at 4pm.

Foundation Press is a Risograph press and publishing facility run by the Foundation Art and Design Programme at the University of Sunderland, it supports both students and artists to create new outcomes and initiatives in print.



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DIY Cultures - Riso

The Tetley, Leeds, LS10 1JQ

5th March 11-6pm

6th March 11-4pm

woad broadside in prog2For this years Pages International Contemporary Artists’ Book Fair I will be showcasing a new body of work produced while taking part in a residency at Robert Smails Printing Works, Innerleithen.

A Scottish National Trust property, the original jobbing press still holds a near complete record of every job printed at the works for the past 150 years.  This includes  copies of The St Ronan’s Standard, the Effective Advertiser.  In 1914 it carried an article welcoming refugees from war torn Belgium to Innerleithen, recounting the traumatic experience of M & Me Callens.  The work is my first attempt at traditional type setting, using original wooden & metal type for the Smail’s collection, but printed at Helen Douglas’s Studio at Deuchar Mill on a Vandercook Printing Press.  The work combines silk screen printing & photo litho.

Alongside the Broadsides referencing aspects of the printing works I will be show casing two new Chap Books.  ‘Tales from Smail’s’, is a collection of  comments, reflections, statements and notes  from volunteers, community members, staff, printers & compositors, connected with the jobbing press,  Arranged into a small folded book, with letter press insert,  musings and collages paint a warm and friendly image of the community and its observations.  Still  relevant to today, the book is an honest account and collaborative effort.

‘Mills and Mayhem’  brings together two characters in the archive of the St Ronan’s Standard I became intrigued by, Thomas Turnbull, Dyer & Waulker of Caerlee Mills and Dundee Suffragette, Ethel Moorhead, activist and failed arsonist.  Two very different characters creating inspiration and  impacting locally and nationally.  Both Chap Books will be on sale at Pages Leeds International Contemporary Artists’ Book Fair

refugees broadside work in prog3

Robert Smails Printing Works

I have been Artist in Residence at Robert Smail’s Printing Works, a Scottish National Trust property for the past 6 months.  This year marks the 150 year anniversary of Smail’s,  where I have created a series of Broadsides & Chap Books inspired by the wealth of material held in the archive at Smail’s.  Broadsides & Chap Books embody a collection of quotes and paraphrases from Tales from Smail’s, handwritten responses from volunteers and staff connected with the printing works.   The quotes reference personal experiences and stories set within the community of Innerleithen and beyond.


Articles from The St Ronan’s Standard, printed at Smail’s until 1916 have been reconfigured and woven into the Broadsides & Chap Books incorporating the geographical landscape of the Scottish Borders.  The work draws on historical and social exploration using the archives to reference the regions rich tradition in textiles & mills, and the start of the First World War. Broadsides & Chap Books capture a window in the history of Smail’s in the past and the present and form part of a wider exhibition at St Ronan’s Wells documenting the history of the jobbing press up until the present day.

Broadsides historically were single sheets of paper printed on one side with either ballads, announcing events, proclamations or advertisements, often pinned in taverns and cottages.  Chap Books are a very early form of street literature, printed onto a single sheet of paper and distributed cheaply to the working class.

Mills & Mayhem(1)

Exhibition: St Ronan’s Wells, Wells Brae, Innerleithen, Peeblesshire EH44 6RB 01896 833583 25 March – 12 July 2-16

Artist talk: Thursday 14th April 2016 7-8pm St Ronan’s Wells

Broadsides: £70 p&p direct from the artist or Robert Smails Printing Works

Chap Books: £10 p&p direct from the artist or on sale at Robert Smail’s Printing Works

Mills & Mayhem(4)Tales from Smails(5)Tales from Smails(1)

Further details:

Ouseburn Warehouse Studios & Workshops, 36 Lime Street, Ouseburn Valley, Newcastle NE1 2PQ    07981381830

Robert Smail’s Printing Works

High St, Innerleithen, Peeblesshire EH44 6HA


Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts HERE!

Poet & Artist, Wajid Hussain invites you to take part in a creative writing day and explore the different perspectives of al-Mutanabbi Street.

Remembering al mutanabbi 2

Content: The morning will be spent discussing and trying out ideas. Complete beginners and those with some experience are welcome. Bring some lunch to share and in the afternoon, Theresa Easton will help make the prose, poetry & writing into a poetry zine. Each participant will have the chance to share their work and take home their own poetry zine.
Book your place:

The Northern Charter 5th Floor Commercial Union House 39 Pilgrim Street Newcastle, NE1 6QE

12th March 10-4pm

Background: Theresa Easton has contributed to the al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here movement from its inception in 2007, making broadsides in response to the car bomb that exploded on al-Mutanabbi Street in Baghdad on March 5th 2007.   Al-Mutanabbi Street is in a mixed Shia-Sunni area. More than 30 people were killed and more than 100 were wounded. Al-Mutanabbi Street, the historic centre of Baghdad bookselling, holds bookstores and outdoor bookstalls, cafes, stationery shops, and even tea and tobacco shops. It has been the heart and soul of the Baghdad literary and intellectual community.  Every year, around March 5th readings take place around the world, in Australia, Canada, Egypt, UK and USA.

What else is happening?

Catherine Cartwright, UK Coordinator for Absence and Presence (the printmaking project of al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here) and an interview Melanie Monsour’s composition, Words In The Wind, is played with stunning effect, you can listen HERE. Catherine also reads Dima Hilal’s poem from the anthology,  al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here: Poets & Writers Respond to the March 5, 2007, Bombing of Baghdad’s “Street of the Booksellers”.


1. In Washington D.C. on March 5th in conjunction with our exhibit there and our partnership with George Mason University and Split This Rock
2. In Portland, Oregon on March 5th in conjunction with our exhibit there.

3. In Boise, Idaho, in conjunction with our exhibit there and in partnership with students and faculty from Boise State University.

4. In Bristol, U.K. on March 5th at the Kitchen Sink Studio

5. In London, UK. On 5th March at the London & South Region of The Society of Bookbinders, a reading in conjunction with Sarah Bodman’s talk and show of work from An Inventory of Al-Mutanabbi Street.

6. In San Francisco on March 6th at the well known literary bar Specs in North Beach, with the reading starting at 6:30pm.

7. In Cairo, Egypt, at The American University in Cairo

8. In Venice, Italy, on March 4th at The Scuola Internazionale di Grafica di Venezia

9. In Berkeley, California, at Moe’s Bookstore on March 5th
10. In Newcastle, UK. on March 12th

11. In Paris, France, on March 5th

12. In Exeter, UK. on March 4th as part of our Absence and Presence exhibit at the Exeter Central Library

13. In New Haven CT. on March 5th at the Institute Library

14. In Calgary, Canada, on March 7th

15. In Vancouver, Canada on March 5th

16. In Palo Alto, California on March 4th

17. In Gloustershire, UK. on March 5th

18. In Rome, Italy on March 5th

19. In Galicia, Spain on March 5th

20. In Montreal, Canada on March 12th
21. The Jaffe Center for Book Arts, at Florida Atlantic University on March 4th at 2pm.
22. In London at the studio of Marcelle Hanselaar

Robert Smails Residency 2015 – 20016

refugees welcomedThe residency at Robert Smail’s is into its last month.   Using the archives as source material, I was particularly interested in 1914 edition of The St Ronan’s Standard. As the First World War began to unfold, the mills adjusted their working schedule, women took over jobs from the men and the orders changed from blue to Khaki.  One story I was struck by was the welcoming into the town of a Belgium family fleeing from war torn Belgium. The story in a newspaper wrote and printed by locals, sits in stark contrast to the xenophobic rhetoric of today’s media.  We should look to the past and understand the capabilities of a small, textile town, coping with upheaval and still having time to welcome a family from Belgium.


The residency at Robert Smail’s has provided an excellent opportunity to get to know some fantastically creative young people from the local area.  Based in the old ‘Co-op’ building in Chapel Street, the Innerleithen Youth Club took part in the first of three  printmaking sessions, learning how to use a traditional printing press.  Inspired by the 150 year anniversary of Robert Smail’s Printing Works, the creative sessions gave the young people an opportunity to consider the archive of work at Robert Smail’s from a different perspective. All the young people were familiar with Smail’s, visiting the jobbing press as part of a school experience, trying their hand at printing and learning about heritage of the works.


The second session provided the young people with an opportunity to explore the process of screen printing and work more collaboratively.  I have been making ‘garland’ sized broadsides using traditional type setting and photo lithography.  I like the unusual shape of the paper which inspired me to encourage the young people to try their hand at printing a very long strip of lining paper.  The results are fantastic!

Setting up screen printing for the evening
Setting up screen printing for the eveningscreenprint1

screenprint2Belgian Relief Fund