Minnesota Center for Book Arts presents the MCBA/Jerome Foundation Book Arts Mentorship Series VII Exhibition

November 1, 2019 – January 27, 2020; Opening reception Thursday, November 7, 6-9pm

October 7, 2019

Minnesota Center for Book Arts (MCBA) is pleased to announce the upcoming exhibition, MCBA/Jerome Book Arts Mentorship Series VII.  The exhibition will be on view from November 1, 2019 to January 27, 2020 in MCBA’s Main Gallery, featuring exciting new work from this year’s MCBA/Jerome Book Arts Mentorship recipients: inter/anti-disciplinary artist Rebekah Crisanta de Ybarra; artist Daniel McCarthy Clifford; poet and sound artist Chaun Webster. The opening reception is free and open to the public on Thursday, November 7 from 6 to 9pm with artists’ remarks at 7pm.

The Book Arts Mentorship is an artist development program aimed at introducing book arts to emerging artists whose primary medium is in another discipline.  With generous funding from the Jerome Foundation, guidance from their selected mentors, workshops and critical support from MCBA, the Mentorship recipients engaged in one year of developing skills in book arts through contemporary and traditional techniques.

“Until I was awarded the mentorship I never really thought of presenting my work in book form,” says Keith Taylor, 2011–2012 mentorship recipient. “I’m a photographer and thought that photographs are meant to be exhibited on a wall in a gallery, but over the course of the year my mind was opened up to that world of artist books, broadsides and portfolios.”

Jerome Foundation has helped emerging artists push the boundaries of contemporary book arts by supporting the creation of new book works. Under the previous six series of mentorships and fourteen series of fellowships, Minnesota artists of diverse disciplines—including printers, papermakers, binders, painters, sculptors, poets, photographers, choreographers, filmmakers and others—have created projects ranging from exquisitely-crafted fine press volumes to documented performances to one-of-a-kind installations that “break the bindings” and redefine conventional notions of book form and content.


Chaun Webster is a poet and sound artist whose work uses a materialist temporality through a textual critique of linearity, while also interrogating memory, the afterlives of slavery, and black spatiality. Webster’s debut book, GeNtry!fication: or the scene of the crime, was published by Noemi Press April 2018 and won a Minnesota Book Award in poetry. For his mentorship, Webster has been working with mentor Drew Peterson, artist and founder of Entity Editions, to create a series of woodblock relief prints that engage in a series of redactions from an account in a slave ship ledger titled, An Act of the Mortality of the Slaves Aboard the Shipp James.  Webster’s work confronts hierarchical structures within historic disciplines and archival accounts, and how privileged source materials have the ability to dictate who and what stories have been credibly documented.

Daniel McCarthy Clifford works across disciplines to explore the dynamics, materials, and histories of disciplinary structures; prisons and schools become entry points to a broader conversation about power, race, class, and sexuality. Daniel has recently collaborated with the University of Minnesota to address the U of M student population’s knowledge gap about mass incarceration and prison labor in the United States. For his mentorship, Daniel has been working with mentor Sam Gould, artist and editor of Beyond Repair, to produce and circulate comics and printed matter to inform the public about criminal justice issues.

Rebekah Crisanta de Ybarra a.k.a. Lady Xok (enrolled Maya-Lenca Nation) is an interdisciplinary artist, musician, and culture bearer. Rooted in Maya-Lenca cosmovision and Indigenous Futurisms, her experimental social practice pulls across disciplines of archaeology, epigraphy, ethnoastronomy, theology, and public art. During her mentorship, Rebekah has created an artistic and ethno-astronomy cultural revitalization project of Mayan epigraphy, astrology, and star maps using book binding and a variety of printing techniques. Inspired by vintage star maps, Rebekah has created work based on the constellation research of Maya Daykeeper and mentor Gina Kan Balam in the first publication of its kind for constellations obscured for the last 500 years.


Minnesota Center for Book Arts is a visual arts nonprofit organization that supports creative expression through traditional and contemporary book arts, including papermaking, bookbinding, and letterpress printing. MCBA’s philosophy and artistic vision challenges its artist community to think beyond the traditional notion of “book.” Today, books can be bound and unbound, fabricated into sculptures, interpreted as metaphor, experienced as installation or performance, and interacted with virtually. What unites this varied work is a focus on the interdisciplinary expression of narrative. To learn more, visit our website at mnbookarts.org.