Dear Friends, Students, Faculty Members and lovers of books,

This is Deb Stevens. I am the administrative director for the American Academy of Bookbinding based out of Telluride, Colorado. This blog was started as a way for all of us, those who have studied at AAB, friends of AAB, as well as those who want to find out more about this place, can keep in touch with each other during the year. I'll be posting all kinds of photos, news and updates as regularly as possible (or newsworthy). I hope you will also share any bookbinding thoughts, questions, revelations, etc. Send me your photos and let us all know what you're up to. Keep connected!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Hélène Jolis Visa Approved!!!!

After several months of translating French documents, phone calls to France and internet research, Hélène Jolis' visa application for "ARTIST OF EXTRAORDINARY ABILITY" was successfully approved by the USCIS. Yahoo!! Thank you to everyone who sent positive energy and/or helped with the application. Get ready, 'cause now Hélène can teach in San Francisco, Boston and Ann Arbor! There is still room in most of her classes so drop me a line if you are interested. She is teaching "Titling" in Ann Arbor and Telluride, and "Contemporary Decorative Techniques" in SF, Boston, Telluride and Ann Arbor. We are very excited!! Hélène is a fabulous teacher. And who knows when she will be back in the States. If you are struggling with titling your books, Hélène will teach you a simple way to perfect your letters.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Don Etherington Video

Last April, Don Etherington was in Telluride for a month teaching Treatment of Textblocks and Sewing and Finishing. Fabulous classes (though it snowed a little which didn't please Don!) Our local TV station came to interview Don and to view the video, go to the following website:


Don with his Finishing Class spring 2008

Greetings from Telluride!

It is Wednesday, March 4 and about 60 degrees and sunny here in the high Rocky Mountains. Not exactly the temperature you'd expect for such a winter day! Very warm, the snow is melting, and the ski slopes are getting thin. The cross country trails are thin too.

I started this blog to keep people updated on the various exciting happenings here in Telluride at our home campus for the American Academy of Bookbinding. We have many irons in the fire this week as we get ready for our spring schedule of classes in Telluride, Ann Arbor, San Francisco and Boston.

We've had very good response to many of our classes. Those of you who haven't decided if you are attending should make up your minds! There are still a few spots left in quite a few of our classes. If you want a refresher on our class schedule, check out our website at www.ahhaa.org/AAB_web/AAB.html. You can download the current 2009 schedule, or view the classes on line.

We've had GREAT response to Hélène Jolis' workshops. Hélène is coming from Paris, France to teach two classes: Titling and Contemporary Decorative Techniques. Hélène was here last year and her workshops were full and very well received. There is still room in most of her classes, so call or email me if you have any questions. We are very much looking forward to having Hélène back this year. I've spent many hours working on her visa application and you would not BELIEVE the effort we have had to go to for her visa. To make a long story short, let's just say I've become quite good at translating French documents! And I probably know as much about Hélène's career as anyone, even more. We have researched her professional career in detail, and I can rattle off many of the different countries and schools across the globe she as taught at: Australia, Brazil, Belgium, Sweden, Canada....the list goes on. I also found out that Hélène is one of only six recipients of the prestigious MOF award, Meilleurs Ouvriers de France, or "Best Craftsmen of France" Award for Gold Tooling. This prestigious award is given to artists in all sorts of trades in France. It was started in 1924 and the most famous MOF award winners that we know in the States are Chefs. But you can enter the MOF contest for all kinds of wonderful and even obscure artistic professions, that in France are considered art forms: painting, sculpture, gardening, hairstyling(!), fashion design and even cake decorating. But to be a winner of an MOF in Gold Tooling is not only very difficult, it is very unusual. Any of you who know Hélène might guess that she is very modest; she never told us this before! It is not surprising, coming from such a modest, humble artist. So, just know that you are truly studying with a Master of Gold Tooling when you take a class with Hélène.

Anyway, I hope to launch the site soon and would love to hear from all of you!