Book Arts

Sarah Bodman

Sarah Bodman

Sarah is responsible for Artists’ Books at the Centre for Print Research (CFPR), where she runs projects investigating and promoting contemporary book arts. She is also Programme Leader for MA Multidisciplinary Printmaking at the Bower Ashton Campus.

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Sarah is the editor of the Artist’s Book Yearbook a biennial reference publication on contemporary book arts, published here by Impact Press. She is also the editor of the Book Arts Newsletter and The Blue Notebook journal for artists’ books. Sarah has written regular news columns on artists’ books for ARLIS UK and Ireland news-sheet (2006 – 2015), ARLISmatters (2016 – 2018) and the Artists’ Books series for a-n (2015 – 2019). Sarah writes a regular artists’ books column for the journal Printmaking Today, and has written for other journals including Art In Print; Axon: Creative Explorations; IMPRINT; JAB; PLI Arte & Design; The Poetry Society; The New Bookbinder; zum Beispiel / zum Buch.

Sarah works with library staff at UWE to deliver exhibitions and public engagement with artists’ books, with Angie Butler and Tom Sowden on the biennial Bristol Artist’s Book Event (BABE), and with artists and writers on our annual World Book Night project.

Sarah completed a two-year AHRC funded research project with Tom Sowden in 2010 which investigated contemporary artists’ publishing and published A Manifesto for the Book (ABPP). In 2018 she worked with artists and academics in Australia, Brazil and the UK on ‘Artists’Books in Australia and Brazil -– looking to the past to read into the future’. She is currently working on the Scandinavian Artists’ Books Partnership Project, supported by the Nordic Culture Council until the end of 2022.

Sarah is currently supervising 7 doctoral students.

Sarah works with external institutions and artists nationally and internationally, with the ABPP Artists’ Books Partnership-exhibition Programme which loans books from her CFPR collection to universities, collections, schools, societies, galleries, libraries and bookshops around the world. This programme runs on a rolling basis, with free loans of books to set up exhibitions, workshops, study groups or displays that promote the subject to a wider community. Some examples of loans include: art+power; HMP Send art workshops; LCBA workshops; Federation University, Ballarat, Australia; DIY Cultures, London, the International Association Kniga Khudozhnika, Moscow and the Eugeniusz Geppert Academy of Fine Art and Design in Wrocław, Poland.

Sarah’s own artists’ books include Flowers in Hotel Rooms Volumes I-V, an ongoing series of books inspired by Richard Brautigan’s novel The Abortion; Do Not Enter, unique pulp/screenprinted book for Tim Mosely’s Codex Event 8, Brisbane, Australia, in the collection of Librorum Apud Artificem library for the artist’s book, Sydney, Australia; Dead Search for the exhibition Lessons in History Vol. II – Democracy at grahame galleries + editions, Brisbane, Australia, November 2012, and Lago Cremisi Permanente, with Chrystal Cherniwchan, commissioned for the exhibition Sarah Bodman – I Made This For You, curated by Antonio Freiles for AMACI – Quindicesima Giornata del Contemporaneo, Galleria d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea L.Barbera, Messina, Italy, Oct-Nov 2019. Recent artist’s book projects include Read To Me, 2018-2019, and Read With Me 2021-2022.

Sarah has been collaborating with the poet and artist Nancy Campbell, on an annual video and book production for World Book Night since 2010. Each event is in tribute to a particular novel. Their first collaboration was commissioned as part of the University of Dundee’s AHRC funded project, Poetry Beyond Text: Vision, Text and Cognition, for which they produced Dinner and A Rose for Patricia Highsmith’s Ripley series. Since then they have made an annual collaborative book and video, inviting artists, writers, musicians to join them on World Book Night. These include TOAST: A Night on Weevil Lake, 2011, in tribute to Douglas Coupland’s novel The Gum Thief; The Secrets of Metahemeralism 2012, in tribute to The Secret History by Donna Tartt; Some Small, Good Things 2013 in tribute to Raymond Carver’s A Small, Good Thing; Post Office in tribute to Charles Bukowski in 2014, Shine On for Stephen King’s The Shining in 2015, Serena Joy 2016, for Margaret Atwood’s novel The Handmaid’s Tale; BOOK ISH NESS in 2017; Their Eyes Were Watching God in tribute to China Miéville, 2018. From 2019, Linda Parr joined as coordinator of World Book Night projects with Sarah, from the Gwalia Gazette for Dylan Thomas’s Under Milk Wood. In 2020, the 10th anniversary, we responded to texts by Nancy Campbell, W. G. Sebald, Olga Tokarczuk and Elizabeth Bishop, for the presciently titled project Should we have stayed at home and thought of here?, and produced a flower-based exhibition and publication The Herbarium in 2021.

Sarah’s artists’ books have been featured in publications including: 1000 Artists’ Books: Exploring the Book as Art, Sandra Salamoney with Peter & Donna Thomas, Quarry Books, Beverly, MA, USA, 2012, and Masters Book Arts: major works by leading artists, curated by Eileen Wallace, Lark Books, New York, April 2011. Sarah’s artists’ books are in 100+ national and international collections including: Tate Britain, the British Library and the V & A Museum, All Saints Library and Winchester School of Art, UK; Joan Flasch Artist’s Book Collection, Yale Center for British Art, MoMA New York, Brooklyn Museum of Art, Mills College and Rhode Island School of Design, USA; Spazio Libro D’Artista, Catania, Sicily; Artists’ Books Archive, Milan; Bibliotheca Alexandria, Egypt; Moscow Artist’s Book Archive; The Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, and Institute of the Arts, Canberra, Australia.

For more information on Sarah’s publications and practice, download a pdf of her CV.