Winter Reader (2003)

MCBA’s fifteenth annual Winter Book publication is entitled Winter Reader 2003 – 2004 and features five meditative texts by Louise Erdrich.

“. . . Writing on a bus through Pennsylvania as the deer graze, slim on black wire legs, the green pastures and the stone barns. Writing in the women’s bathroom of a bar, a restaurant, a train station. Writing stupidly, with gratitude, the day’s events on an outbound plane delayed and de-icing. Writing to shut out the prayerful thoughts, the pilot’s voice, writing for the joy of seeing words fill neat lines physically traveling the page. Writing for the texture of the handwriting and the feel of the pen, writing for my sanity. For truly, without writing, I would be lost and diminished. I would be empty. I really don’t know how else I would bear the joy of living.”

The provocative introspection and poetic observance offered in these stories are characteristic of Erdrich’s writing. Fear, angst, anticipation and joy are revealed in otherwise ordinary events. Life’s complexities are fundamental in discovering simple, transcendent beauty.

Erdrich’s texts provide the foundation for the 2003 Winter Book project and a starting point for designers, printers, binders and papermakers.

Winter Reader 2003 – 2004 is available in deluxe, standard and chapbook editions designed by Michael Lizama under the direction of MCBA Artistic Director Mary Jo Pauly. Standard and Deluxe editions feature Minnesota papermakers, with tipped-in original paperworks by artists Rebecca Alm, Amanda Degener, Mary Hark, Bridget O’Malley and Jeff Rathermel. Text in all editions is letterpress from monotype Ehrhardt under the supervision of Sara Langworthy.

The Deluxe Edition, lettered A through Z and signed by the author and paper artists, is a 5 5/8” x 9 1/8” volume featuring signatures sewn onto an accordion of blue-gray Japanese paper bound into a traditional book block; the deep navy cover is full leather with blind embossed decorative motif and title. The book is housed in a 5 3/4” x 9 1/4” x 3/4” cloth-covered double tray box. The Deluxe edition binding and box are designed and executed by Jana Pullman with handmade paper endsheets by Mary Hark.

The Standard Edition, numbered 1 through 100, is also signed by the author and paper artists. The 5 5/8” x 9 1/8” is printed on Mohawk Superfine and quarter-bound in Japanese Saifu cloth with Japanese cloud paper sides. Binding and the accompanying slipcase, designed by Greg Campbell, are by Campell-Logan Bindery.

The Chapbook, or readers’ edition, presents the text in a longstitch structure devised by Sara Langworthy. The cover paper is Gmund Havanna Arena 111 lb.

Text by Louise Erdrich
Illustrations by various artists
Designed by Michael Lizama under the direction of Mary Jo Pauly
Printed under the direction of Sara Langworthy
Deluxe edition designed and bound by Jana Pullman
Hand-made paper endsheets by Mary Hark