The Marlboro Record

Baber Fund: Making books, making connections

In early April, local bookmaker Linda Lembke returned to Marlboro College for a bookmaking workshop with 15 students, staff, and faculty. She was invited by anthropology professor Carol Hendrickson and junior Courtney Varga, whose academic interests include book arts, with support from the Baber Fund. 

The Baber Fund is an endowment based on a gift from the Alice Baber Art Trust in 2006, and provides opportunities for visiting artists to teach, interact with faculty and students, and create new work. In particular, the fund is designed to encourage collaborative expression between the visual arts and other curricular areas, such as the work of Carol and Courtney.

“Marlboro is a book-oriented sort of place,” said Carol, who has pioneered the use of sketchbooks with “visual field notes” in her anthropological work and travels. “Over the past several years handmade book structures have made an important appearance as parts of Plan work.”

“One of my interests lies in combining learning English with book arts,” said Courtney, who is working on a Plan of Concentration on international English education. “Using book arts also allows me to combine my love of the social sciences and humanities with my love of art. I’m hoping to become more skilled in the field in anticipation for my six-month internship abroad as part of the World Studies Program.”      

In addition to the bookmaking workshop, the Baber Fund grant provided for adding to the book arts collection in the Rice-Aron Library, for the inspiration of even more Marlboro book artists.