RAWKing the Kalamazoo Book Arts Center


Peanut butter and jelly ... peas and carrots ... RAWK & The Kalamazoo Book Arts Center

We couldn't ask for a more perfect partner in the publishing of books than our friends at the KBAC. They've kindly welcomed RAWK students into their studio this summer learn about the arts of papermaking and printmaking, adding a fun twist to all of our Summer Writing Workshops. 



The Kalamazoo Book Arts Center, now in it’s eleventh year of operation, is a nonprofit arts organization, community workshop and educational center located in the Park Trades Center in downtown Kalamazoo. Educational programming brings the world of book arts to a diverse group of children and adults throughout the community. Creative expression through writing and art is invaluable in teaching literacy, innovative thinking, problem solving, communication, manual dexterity, concentration, and appreciation for history and tradition. Last year the KBAC worked with over 1,000 youth from area schools and organizations. Additionally, the KBAC is a monthly Art Hop venue, hosts Poets in Print readings, creates limited edition letterpress books, and offers exciting adult and children classes. Check out what they have to offer at http://kalbookarts.org/

In the studio, summer writing workshop students explored their artistic creativity as they carved foam block prints and used ink to transfer the image onto paper. Enthusiastic to learn more, students also made their own sheets of paper from cotton pulp. In our final end-of-the-summer session, our RAWKstars made hardcovers for their personal copies of our Summer Writing Workshop anthologies, Bookworms, Banana Peels, And Other Ideaing using the paper they made this summer. Their copies also include one of their foam block prints, which will all be part of the KBAC's February Art Hop show!

Our summer with the KBAC didn't end there! Make-a-Book-from-Scratch is a five-week project where youth from The Boys and Girls Club of Greater Kalamazoo participate in a RAWK poetry workshop and also learn all components of book making. RAWK facilitators helped students use their poetic words to fill the pages, and the Book Arts Center guided students through the process of bringing their books to life. 

Fostering our literacy community alongside the Kalamazoo Book Arts Center has made our summer especially bright! Thank you, KBAC, for an especially fantastic summer of making and loving books!