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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Donation creates new letterpress studio

Rebecca Rillos / Arizona Daily Wildcat

*First guy* Freddy Eschrich, a visual communications and graphic design major, gives patrons a demonstration of the newly donated letterpress equipment at the Jack Sinclair Letterpress Studio. Fifteen tons of letterpress equipment was donated by Sinclair to open the studio. 

*Second guy* Robert Wilson, right, a graphic design sophomore, talks about the new letterpress to Tom and Marilyn Lindell. Fifteen tons of letterpress equipment was donated by Sinclair to open the studio.
Rebecca Rillos
Rebecca Rillos / Arizona Daily Wildcat *First guy* Freddy Eschrich, a visual communications and graphic design major, gives patrons a demonstration of the newly donated letterpress equipment at the Jack Sinclair Letterpress Studio. Fifteen tons of letterpress equipment was donated by Sinclair to open the studio. *Second guy* Robert Wilson, right, a graphic design sophomore, talks about the new letterpress to Tom and Marilyn Lindell. Fifteen tons of letterpress equipment was donated by Sinclair to open the studio.

The legacy of late letterpress artist Jack Sinclair survives in the new School of Art studio that formally opened on Saturday.

Students, faculty and community members celebrated the grand opening of the Jack Sinclair Letterpress Studio with an open house featuring food, music and equipment demonstrations. The studio was created after the school received Jack Sinclair’s three letterpresses and 10 cabinets of materials, filled with materials such as type and ink from his wife, Nancy Sinclair, who attended the opening with her son.

The school previously owned two letterpresses, which were housed in a small room, according to Karen Zimmermann, associate professor in the School of Art. Around the time the equipment was donated, the building on 1035 E. Mabel St. became available and was converted into a studio.

The School of Art and the Book Art Collective club offer letterpress-printing courses. Students have access to the studio to incorporate letter pressing into their projects.

“”It’s a really old technique of printing that’s laid by hand,”” said Jena Ochoa, a visual communications senior, who passed out letter press printed bookmarks during the event. “”It’s time consuming but really nice.””

Zimmermann contacted Jack Sinclair several years ago about donating his letterpress equipment but later lost contact, she said. She met with Nancy Sinclair last year after learning he had passed away.

Nancy Sinclair decided the UA was the right fit for his equipment. Students helped transfer the equipment from her home in Albuquerque, N.M., last semester.

“”I think this is exactly what he wanted,”” said Nancy Sinclair after touring the studio. “”This is his dream of where he would have wanted his equipment to go. This is contributing to teaching young people and to people making art.””

The additional equipment will allow the School of Art to expand its course offerings in the subject, Zimmermann said. She said the facility also provides a space for students to collaborate.

“”It’s very empowering because they can make their own things,”” Zimmermann said. “”They have a community here.””

Alice Vinson, who graduated from the UA in December and will return in September as a studio art graduate student, uses letter pressing in her book art. She said she likes the physical aspect of the art as opposed to working on the computer.

“”With these, there’s body movement,”” said Vinson, who demonstrated how to use a century-old press. “”It’s a whole different world.””

The new studio and equipment are marked improvements from the previous studio, Vinson said.

“”It was like a closet,”” she said about the old studio. “”This is huge. I love it. We all love it. We get to share the experience.””

Nancy Sinclair said she was happy to give her husband’s equipment a second life at the university. It was sitting in her backyard after his death, she said.

“”Both of our needs were very complementary,”” Nancy Sinclair said. “”It found a home.””

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