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Anatomy of a Book, or Deconstruct & Reconstruct the Most Important Human Invention of All Time

May 13, 2023 @ 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm CDT


The book is, arguably, the most important human invention of all time (so much so we put it in the title of this workshop). On Saturday May 13th, join Oil & Cotton’s Shannon Driscoll and The Garret’s Teaching Artist in Residence Lisa Huffaker–whose collaboration began in 2012, when they designed and taught ambitious workshops for teens and preteens, combining writing, art, and bookmaking into a dynamic Zine Camp (garnering a Best of Dallas award from the Dallas Observer)–for an afternoon exploring and meditating on this singular, species-defining object.

Dissect vintage volumes, and learn about the amazing history and structure of this object we call the book. Reconstruct the dissected parts into one-of-a-kind artist’s books, to anchor that history in material form. Each participant will leave with a unique artist’s book built from the pages of old books, as well as samples of materials (Papyrus! Vellum! Linen thread waxed with beeswax!) important to the history of books. Participants will also leave this workshop with the ability to build their own books, and share the astonishing (but often overlooked) history and nature of this familiar, yet world-changing object.


Shannnon Driscoll (Oil & Cotton) received her Masters Degree from the Kilgarlin Center for the Preservation of the Cultural Record at the University of Texas at Austin, where she studied book and paper conservation. She continued conservation training through internships and professional experience while at the Northeast Document Conservation Center, Andover; Walters Art Museum, Baltimore;  Widener Library, Harvard College Libraries, Cambridge, the Pinos Y Serriera Archives, Vilassar de Dalt, Spain before opening a private conservation practice in Dallas. Twelve years ago she stepped away from conservation to create Oil and Cotton, a creative space for art education, exhibition, performance and exchange between the public and the art community in Dallas, Texas. Oil and Cotton offers workshops and classes ranging from painting to fiber based arts taught by artists from Texas and beyond.


Lisa Huffaker creates poetry, collage, assemblage, artist’s books, and many combinations of these. Her poetry appears in Diode, THRUSH, Michigan Quarterly Review, CTRL+V, 32 Poems, DIAGRAMCincinnati Review, Phoebeand many other publications. Her art has lately been seen at Bath House Cultural Center and Ro2 Art. She was recently a finalist for Dallas Poet Laureate, and leads community writing projects as the Writer’s Garret’s Teaching Artist in Residence. She has taught text-and-image projects at the Dallas Museum of Art, Nasher Sculpture Center, and The Dallas Contemporary. Her award-winning project, White Rock Zine Machine, offers tiny books of poetry and art through sculptural vending machines. She is currently working on a book of visual poetry, transforming a anti-feminist “self help” book from 1963 through collage and poetic erasure. The manuscript-in-progress was exhibited internationally as part of TU Delft and Cornell Tech’s 3rd Workshop on Obfuscation.

Oil and Cotton is an art studio and artist supply shop located near downtown Dallas. We provide classes and workshops for people of all ages and skill levels. Our hands-on classes are taught by professionals with knowledge ranging from traditional craft to contemporary art practices. We provide creative space for education, exhibition, performance and exchange between the public and the art community.



May 13, 2023
3:00 pm - 5:00 pm CDT


Oil & Cotton
2313 Beatrice St Suite #100
Dallas, TX 75208 United States
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