Minnesota Book Artist Award


MCBA and the Minnesota Book Awards are proud to announce the 2017 Book Artist Award Winner:

Steven McCarthy, for his Wee Go Library project.

McCarthy’s award-winning piece is a mobile display unit for 22 altered books selected from Little Free Libraries in the Twin Cities. Using various techniques – collage, rebinding, cutting, folding, tearing, gluing – the artist altered the books to create a collection in which throwaway items are reborn as a part of a larger library narrative. Each book includes a small pamphlet with a pin-pointed map and photos of the library structure and sponsoring house. The entire collection is housed in custom-built oak and pine display case with felt-lined drawers.

McCarthy is a professor of graphic design at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities campus. His long-standing interest in theories of design authorship – as both scholar and practitioner – has led to lectures, exhibits, publications and grant-funded research on six continents. His book on the topic, The Designer As… Author, Producer, Activist, Entrepreneur, Curator and Collaborator: New Models for Communicating was published in 2013 by BIS, Amsterdam. McCarthy has been in more than 125 juried and invitational exhibitions and his artist’s books are in prestigious collections. He serves on the board of the Minnesota Center for Book Arts. Visit his website.

Please join us for the opening reception of the 2016 Book Artist Award Exhibition

Opening reception Friday, February 10; 5:30pm – 7:30pm
Exhibition on display January 20 – March 26
Open Book Cowles Literary Commons

This annual award, presented by Minnesota Center for Book Arts (MCBA) and the Minnesota Book Awards, and sponsored by Lerner Publishing Group, recognizes a Minnesota book artist or book artist collaborative group for excellence of a new artistic work, demonstrated proficiency and quality in the book arts through their body of work, as well as an ongoing commitment and significant contributions to Minnesota’s book arts community.


Previous Award recipients include:
Wendy Fernstrum(2016)
Harriet Bart, Philip Gallo and Jill Jevne (2015)
Fred Hagstrom (2014)
Jana Pullman (2013)
Bridget O’Malley and Amanda Degener of Cave Paper (2012)
Regula Russelle (2011)
Wilber H. “Chip” Schilling (2010)
Paulette Myers-Rich (2009)
Jody Williams (2008)

Created in 1988, The Minnesota Book Awards is a statewide, year-round outreach program of The Friends of the Saint Paul Public Library in partnership with the Saint Paul Public Library and City of Saint Paul. For more information about the Minnesota Book Artist Award, visit the Friends of the St. Paul Public Library’s website or call 651-366-6497.