Remembering Walter Hamady: Selections from the Perishable Press

Born in 1940 in Flint, Michigan, Walter Hamady was a book artist, educator, publisher, and poet known for his tactile and witty approach to bookmaking and collage. As the founder of the influential Perishable Press Limited and professor emeritus at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, Hamady was a leader in the field for decades. He acquired a love for printed materials early in his childhood, citing his mother’s extensive book and magazine collection as an original inspiration. He received his BFA from Wayne State University (1964) and his MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art (1966). In 1964, while working towards his MFA, Hamady launched the Perishable Press. Through the press, he published 131 volumes, including works of his own and those of many contemporaries. He joined the faculty at the University of Wisconsin, Madison in 1966, and he became an influential voice in the art department until his retirement in 1996.Hamady received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts for his work at Perishable Press (1976, 1978, and 1980) and a fellowship from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fund in 1969. His work has been collected by institutions including the Victoria and Albert Museum in London and the New York Public Library.

Remembering Walter Hamady: Selections from the Perishable Press celebrates the life and career of Walter Hamady. As a pioneer of bookbinding, printmaking and collage, Hamady created the Perishable Press as a space for experimentation and innovation in the field of book arts. By collaborating with other poets, writers and artists, Hamady brought others into the realm of bookmaking, expanding the reach of the medium. In this exhibition, we present a survey of his work over the span of four decades and numerous collaborations, with poets like Robert Creeley, Rosmarie Waldrop, George Oppen, and others.

Exhibition Checklist

  • The Quartz Crystal History of Perry Township Since the Earliest Creation of Life, Walter Hamady (1979)
  • Gin: Four Journal Pieces, Walter Hamady, Written by Paul Blackburn, bound by Douglas Cockerell & son (1970)
  • Making a Sacher Torte, Walter Hamady, written by Diane Wakowski, illustrated by Ellen Lanyon (1981)
  • Guillem de Poitou: His Eleven Extant Poems, Walter Hamady, illustrated by Roland Ginzel, written by Guillem de Poitou, translated by Paul Blackburn, edited by George Economou (1976)
  • Hunkering: the Last Gabberjabb, Walter Hamady with contributions from Henrik Drescher, Patrick JB Flynn, David McLimans, Peter Sis, William Stafford, and John Wilde, bound by Scott Kellar (2006)
  • Eyes Touch and Change (or) Weather Conditions at Other Locations, Walter Hamady (1986)
  • Housemarks, Walter Hamady, written by Conrad Hilberry, calligraphy by Michael Hughey (1980)
  • Hwaet! Walter Hamady, written by Peter Glassgold, illustrated by Lester Doré, bound by Marta Gomez (1987)
  • Whitman Sampler, Walter Hamady, written by Richard Wiley, woodcut illustrations by Jim Lee (1999)
  • Parking Lots, Walter Hamady, written by Clarence Major, illustrated by Laura Dronzek (1992)
  • Nullity (with subtitles), Walter Hamady, written by Kenneth Bernard (2000)
  • Reflections on a Cardboard Box, Walter Hamady, written by Paul Auster, illustrated by Henrik Drescher (2004)
  • A Timeline of Sorts, Walter Hamady, with contributions from Shiek Nassib Makarem, Paul Blackburn, Jack Beal, Gene Feldman, William Stafford, Toby Olson, Bartolameu Dos Santos, Warrington Colescott, and Reynolds Stone (2010)
  • John’s Apples, Walter Hamady, written by Reeve Lindbergh, illustrated by John Wilde (1995)
  • Travelling Gabberjabb No. 7 (1996)
  • Perishable Press business card
  • Remembering Esther, Walter Hamady (1990)
  • a broad(back)side, Walter Hamady, illustrated by Walter Askin (1985)
  • 1971: offerings of illustrated broadsides and books,  Walter Hamady (1971)
  • Friends of Papermaking: Card of Freedom
  • Friends of Typography: Ruth Lingen’s Card
  • Wakowski and Lanyon: Making a Sacher Torte (prospectus)
  • Six Poems, Walter Hamady, J.H. Wilde, written by J.D. Whitney (1987)
  • Harry Lewis: Pulsars (prospectus), Walter Hamady, Sam Gilliam (1964)
  • Valentine 1987, Walter Hamady (1987)
  • The Wandering Tattler (prospectus), Walter Hamady, Ellen Lanyon, written by Diane Wakoski (1973)
  • His Hands Talk in a Praising Voice, Walter Hamady, written by Robert Vas Dias (1972)
  • A Fragment of a Never Ending Story, Walter Hamady, Illustrated by Jack Beal
  • The Perishable Press Limited, Walter Hamady (1971)
  • th prshbl prss lmtd BOOKS 1968, Walter Hamady (1968)
  • Journal Entry (with drawing of chair and plant), Walter Hamady, illustrated by Sondra Freckelton (1972)
  • Song of the Sly Mongoose, Walter Hamady, written by Arthur Brown, illustrated by Janet Morgan (1981)
  • Hand Papermaking: A Book of Qualified Suspicions,  Walter Hamady (1964-1982)
  • stick that fatt finger,  Walter Hamady (1977)
  • Warning!, Walter Hamady (1980)
  • Hand Papermaking: A Book of Qualified Suspicions, Walter Hamady, illustrations by Jim Lee (1964-1982)
  • Since Man Began to Eat Himself: four poems, two stories, Walter Hamady, illustrated by Warrington Colescott, Written by Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Kenneth Bernard, Allen Ginsberg, Toby Olson, Jerome Rothenberg, Joel Oppenheimer (1986)

Exhibition Views

View of Hamady exhibition at CBA Bindery Gallery
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