THE RAIN'S BACK, and let's be real: The Pacific Northwest is best enjoyed basking in a bookstore's indoor heating, not at summer festivals and bar patios. I'm all for weather that drives people into local shops and spaces ignored in the summer months, and I'd like to introduce you to one of them, Publication Studio, a print-on-demand publisher that produces some of the best local artist books, literature, and poetry.
Currently helmed by Patricia No and Antonia Pinter, Publication Studio has published more than 300 titles since 2009, and boasts 13 independently operated sibling studios throughout North America and Europe, each sharing in PS' ideology of attending to the social life of the book. A handy function of the sibling studio setup is that the books published at each individual studio are available at all, so if you'd like a text put out by PS London, feel free to ask No and Pinter to print you up a copy and bind it in-house.
Publication Studio is also a great introduction to Portland's art and writing communities. Israel Lund's Some, But Not All of My Clothes; James Papadopoulos' documentation of his apartment gallery, ME∑(s)A Project Space; and Ryann Bosetti's Regarding Head Shape: Acknowledgment of the Haircut as Form are just three artist books available through PS that document creative practices and artist-run spaces in Portland. PS' ongoing collaborations also give a unique perspective into how an artist's approach to the book form can evolve over time. Photographer Delaney Allen's four PS books are a perfect example: Spanning four years and many bodies of work, they reflect Allen's shifting relationship with photography.
PS aims to put the "public" in "publication," allowing for communities of artists and readers to engage in dialogue around literature and art-making. This is evident in the texts that they publish and the events they hold at their downtown Portland storefront location, which acts as reading room, production site, and gathering space for book releases, readings, dinners, and parties. In a town brimming with creativity, yet at times socially disconnected, the effort PS puts into welcoming people into their space is a gift for artists, writers, and readers of all kinds. PS' frequent events are a great way to get to know the space and the community it fosters.
Publication Studio blurs every boundary of book, artwork, and marketplace, all while supporting local and international artists and writers. We're lucky to have them.