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BookLab is the English department’s makerspace, studio, library and community letterpress.

BookLab's resources include three hand-presses for letterpress printing (a "Book Beetle" modelled on the historic Gutenberg screw press, an authentic 19th-century Victorian parlor press and a Line-O-Scribe sign press for poster and broadside work); a cabinet full of lead type and ornaments in various sizes and styles as well as wood type; a 3D printer; tools and hardware for bookbinding and paper-making, sensors, circuitry and paper computing materials (like conductive thread and thermochromic ink); two iPads; and a collection of several hundred artists' books, experimental books, chapbooks, zines, historical artifacts and books about books.

We host classes, run workshops, organize talks and symposia and maintain regular open hours during which anyone may drop by and consult with us or use or facilities and equipment.

Location: Tawes 3248

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What Can I Do in BookLab?

  • Learn fundamentals of book history and physical and descriptive bibliography
  • Set letterpress type and print postcards, bookmarks, broadsides or pages on three different tabletop presses
  • Experiment with 3D printing, electronic sensors, circuitry and other tactile computing elements
  • Work in papermaking, bookbinding and other elements of the traditional book arts, as well as zines and zine-making
  • Touch a sheet of 15th-century vellum, a book printed with waterproof pages or a page printed in Braille
  • Explore our library of several hundred artist’s books, experimental books and books about books
  • Participate in talks and workshops from visiting artists and scholars
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Contact Us

Matthew Kirschenbaum

Professor, English

3201 Tawes Hall
College Park MD, 20742

(301) 405-9650

Kari Kraus

Associate Professor, English

3217 Tawes Hall
College Park MD, 20742

(301) 405-3783

Aaron Bartlett

PhD Candidate, English