Melissa Jay Craig

Chicago, Illinois

Manifest, O

Manifest, O presents the experience of losing one’s hearing in visual terms. The pages are handmade of semi-translucent abaca; ‘printed’ as the sheets were formed, with holes in place of letterforms; the words have all dropped from the pages. Each page was individually sized and stained to recall aged parchment. Illustrated with drawings in five shades of Prismacolor pencil. Sewn to hemp cords, with linen back-bead endbands. Modified lap-component binding, with spine and boards of cast kozo; boards covered in transparent calf skin vellum (which was deliberately encouraged to cockle), edge-dyed, with joints of sanded goat skin. Created with the generous support of the Ragdale Foundation, The Vermont Studio Center, and a Columbia College Chicago Faculty Development Grant. 46 x 35 x 9 centimeters. Created 2006.


Melissa Jay Craig holds an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where she was awarded an Anna Louise Raymond Traveling Fellowship. She is Artist-in- Residence at the Columbia College Chicago Center for Book and Paper Arts, where she teaches artistís books, installation, sculptural paper, thesis practicum and even an occasional bookbinding class, in the Interdisciplinary Arts Departmentís MFA in Book and Paper Arts degree program. Her sculptural book works, usually constructed of her own hand-processed paper, have been exhibited internationally. Represented in many public book collections, Melissa has been awarded ten consecutive residencies at the Ragdale Foundation, residencies at the Mary Anderson Center for the Arts, and the Vermont Studio Center, an Illinois Arts council finalistís grant for Artistís books, a Vermont Studio Center Artistís Grant, and a Columbia College Faculty Development Grant, which helped her to complete Manifest, O. She has also received the Full-time Faculty Excellence in Teaching Award, and has served two years as a Fellow of the Center for Teaching Excellence at Columbia College Chicago. Website at www.melissajaycraig.com.