bookRoom is the post-digital research platform, artist book press and publisher based at University for the Creative Arts in Farnham. It is run by the artist and composer Emmanuelle Waeckerlé. bookRoom has taken part in Small Publishers Fair most years since 2008. There have also been collaborations including two books and a zoom event and discussion. All three are available here to download free.

The Book is Alive!
Published by RGAP* The Book is Alive! is a survey of thinking and innovative practice in contemporary publishing. The book has its roots in the 2012 international symposium BOOKLIVE. It is described by Waeckerlé as: “a valuable and timely survey of fast-changing modes of making, reading, archiving and disseminating ‘on the page’ work.”

The Book is Alive! includes texts by Small Publishers Fair participants Sarah Bodman (Impact Press), Susan Johanknecht & Katherine Meynell, and Sharon Kivland (MA BIBLIOTHÈQUE).

The original edition of 500 is now sold out. Download a free copy here

* Research Group for Artists Publications (RGAP) was led by Martin Rogers. One of the group’s activities was the Small Publishers Fair, which was founded by Rogers in 2002. The Book Alive! is dedicated to the memory of Martin Rogers for his enthusiasm for and support of independent publishing.

Code—X Paper, Ink, Pixel and Screen
Twenty-six contributors describe or reflect on their work from analogue production to digital activity. Code—X looks at innovations and alternative approaches to publishing. It charts pre-digital strategies and examines the benefits and limitations of digital publishing.

Codex Paper, Ink, Pixel and Screen comprises essays, interviews and work by, amongst others, SPF participants Simon Cutts (Coracle Press), Alec Finlay (morning star), Katharine Meynell & Susan Johanknecht and Colin Sackett (uniformbooks), and by SPF visitor, librarian and collector Maria White.

The original edition of 500 is very hard to find. Download a free copy here

The Book is Alive! (RGAP 2013) and Code—X Paper, Ink, Pixel and Screen (bookRoom, 2015)
The Book is Alive! (RGAP 2013) and Code—X Paper, Ink, Pixel and Screen (bookRoom, 2015)

Postdigital Download, 10 February 2022, a bookRoom Zoom event and discussion
The event was occasioned by Matt Johnston‘s proposal for a ‘reading economy’ in his book Photobooks & (Onomatopee, 2021), which itself came out of extensive PhD research with bookRoom at UCA Farnham.

Postdigital Download bought together Johnston, who is also founder of the Photobook club, Danny Aldred, co-editor of Code —X, Alessandro Ludovico, author of Post-Digital Print: the mutation of publishing since 1894, SPF organiser Helen Mitchell, Delphine Bedel of META/BOOKS publishing and Paula Roush of the imprint msdm.

Emmanuelle Waeckerlé, co-editor of three of the books, hosted the event. Watch it here

00:00:00 to 00:06:00 – introduction, Emmannuelle Waeckerlé
00:06:00 to 00:21:30 – bookRoom and The Book is Alive! Emmannuelle Waeckerlé
00:21:30 to 00:33:00 – photobooks & a reading economy, Matt Johnston
00:33:30 to 00:48:40 – publishing, teaching and CODE X, Danny Aldred
00:48:50 to 01:09:00 – Post- Digital Print and its dissemination, Alessandro Ludovico
01:09:00 to 01:32:00 – the Small Publishers Fair, past & present, on & offline, Helen Mitchell
01:32:00 to 01:58:42 – discussion

Thanks to Emmannuelle Waeckerlé for organising and giving access to these valuble resources.

Helen Mitchell, 24 October 2022

The Book is Alive! (RGAP 2013) and Code—X Paper, Ink, Pixel and Screen (bookRoom, 2015)
A postcard designed Danny Aldred to promote The Book is Alive!