SEP 09 Firsthand Experience: Paper Engineering and Book Arts

Try your hand at book making! 

Regarded book artist Carol Barton leads a bookmaking workshop inspired by the courageous creativity of contemporary artists featured in the special exhibition RevivalThis workshop provides the tools and time for participants to tap into their own expressive powers.

During this workshop, participants will: 

  • Explore paper engineering and book arts as modes of visual communication. 
  • Spend time in the special exhibition Revival looking at Lalla Essaydi’s photographs from her “Bullets Revisited” series, Alison Saar’s mixed-media works, and Louise Bourgeois’s bronze sculpture Topiary to discover how each artist has used the body to construct/deconstruct a view of the self in relation to larger issues of gender and ethnic identity.
  • Create a “Self-Portrait Figure Book,” a contemporary take on traditional Ethiopian talisman books, which were made to the height of the individual and worn to ward off disease.
  • Transform the outlines of their bodies into a life-size accordion-fold book.  
  • Enhance their initial tracing with pencil, paint, personal items, and/or collage materials. 
  • Take home their creation and a “studio to go.”

This workshop is designed to instruct and engage audiences 13 and older. Materials, instruction, and inspiration will be provided.


Carol Barton is a book artist, curator, and teacher. Her work is exhibited internationally and is in the collections of the Library of Congress, the Museum of Modern Art, the V&A Museum in London and others. Carol has taught adults and students at all educational levels and is on the faculty of several art schools. Her books, The Pocket Paper Engineer, Volumes 1, 2 and 3, are how-to guides to making pop-up cards and pages. She is currently working on a new series of landscape paintings.


Sold Out. To add your name to the waitlist, please contact


In celebration of NMWA’s 30th anniversary, and inspired by the museum’s focus on contemporary women artists as catalysts for change, Revival illuminates how women working in sculpture, photography, and video use spectacle and scale for expressive effect.


National Museum of Women in the Arts