Currently on Exhibition
Silver Buckle Press
On Display: July 8 through August 31, 2016
Silver Buckle Press is a working museum of letterpress printing dedicated to preserving the craft of fine printing through educational programming, publications, exhibitions and tours. In March of 2016 the Silver Buckle Press collection of books, wood and metal type, presses, and printing equipment was relocated to the Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum through a long-term agreement with the University of Wisconsin. The original collection was put together by Robert Shaftoe. Shaftoe was an art director at the Ford Motor Company and a hobby printer. He named his press “Silver Buckle” after the nursery rhyme, Bobby Shaftoe. It begins “Bobby Shaftoe’s gone to sea, silver buckles on his knee.” In 1973 the Silver Buckle Press was purchased from Robert Shaftoe’s estate by the University of Wisconsin libraries, upon the urging of Professor Walter Hamady (now retired) of the University of Wisconsin–Madison Art Department. When the Silver Buckle Press came to UW-Madison, it was set up by the libraries as a working museum. To celebrate the history of Silver Buckle Press, this exhibition will display work from the collection.
New Exhibitions will be announced soon.
New Impressions 2016
On Display: May 11 through June 30, 2016
Exhibition Reception and Awards: June 11 from 5-7 pm
Hamilton Wood Type and Printing Museum is dedicated to the the preservation, education, production and printing of wood type. “New Impressions” is an international, juried exhibition to showcase exploration and creativity with letterpress printing techniques. From this age-old tradition, we strive to challenge and inspire artists to continue the love of printing. The exhibition reception and awards at Hamilton will take place on June 11 from 5-7 pm. Please plan on joining us for this free event to help celebrate this exhibition.
Following exhibition at Hamilton, the show travels to Design College Australia in Brisbane for a one-month display. We are honored to work with our friends there to share this international exhibition more expansively. The exhibition is on display at Design College Australia August 9–21, 2016.
The exhibition poster for the show was designed and printed by Nick Larson with assistance from Jim Moran and Stephanie Carpenter. It can be purchased at the museum online shop.
On Display: March 5 through April 30, 2016
Closing Reception: April 30, 5 - 7 pm
The Globe Printing Company of Chicago was once among the leading makers of posters for circuses, rodeos, fairs, entertainment and general merchandising. After the business closed, the largely unique printing blocks were stored in a semi trailer for over 25 years until they were donated to the museum and transferred to Two Rivers. These pieces of wood type, images, and illustration cuts were often printed, then another image was carved into the back of the block. The original image would then be shimmed so that the next image would print evenly. The backs of these blocks make for interesting compositions and stories. This exhibition shows off those blocks as well as original posters that were used for make ready in the printing process. The exhibition closing reception will take place on April 30 from 5-7 pm. Please plan on joining us for this free event.
Moran's Quality Print Shop
On Display: January 7 through February 27, 2016
Our first exhibit of the new year features the work of printer and artist Bernie Moran. Beginning in 1966, he created an annual calendar for his customers at Moran's Quality Print Shop. The success of the calendars continued a project that lasted until 2004, three years after the shop had closed. This exhibit showcases the calendars printed at the shop, as well as Bernie's fine pen and ink drawings that represent historic sites around the Green Bay area where the print shop was, dating back to 1945. Bernie Moran learned the craft of printing from his father, Frank E. Moran and studied at The Layton School of Art in Milwaukee. He is the father of museum directors Bill and Jim Moran. The exhibit coincides with the 50th anniversary of the first calendar the shop published.
On Display: November 7 through December 30, 2015
In the gallery are drawings, newsletters, photos, and specimens from the Monotype Archive. Come see pattern drawings documenting the development of Times New Roman, original artwork drawn at Monotype for Figaro, and prints of wood engravings by Louis John Pouchée.
On Display: September 5 through October 28, 2015
Gallery Reception: Saturday, October 24th 4 - 6 pm
David’s work explores the potential of letterpress printing as a medium for creative, non-commercial printmaking. The prints—and the collages, which derive from proofs and makereadies—in this exhibition utilize only the letters W-O-R-D. He developed a masking technique, isotype printing, and uses that process to take the letters apart and reassembled the particles into a visceral lexicon.
"I attempt to create abstract compositions that honor the history of wood type while striving to evolve and extend its visual vocabulary. Often over the past decade, this has been achieved through a process of addition, printing layer upon layer until the rectilinear nature of the process is concealed."
David Wolske received a BA in Studio Art from Marian University, Indianapolis, Indiana, and an MFA in Graphic Design from Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana. His work is exhibited and collected around the world. He regularly teaches typography, graphic design, letterpress printing, and book arts classes and workshops across the United States. You can view more of his work on his website.
Join us on Saturday, October 24th from 4-6 pm for a gallery reception of this exhibition. This event is free and open to the public.
Tour De Lead Graffiti
On Display: September 5th through October 31, 2015
Ray Nichols & Jill Cypher of Lead Graffiti will be exhibiting their project Tour De Lead Graffiti at the Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum gallery July 11 through August 31. Tour de Lead Graffiti is a major endurance letterpress project which returns for its fifth tour at Lead Graffiti Studio in July. Following the Tour de France Lead Graffiti produces a series of 23 letter press posters. One poster each day is produced with guest contributors who collaborate with Ray and Jill to create a letterpress poster paralleling the events of each stage of the Tour de France. The exhibition will include highlights from this previous years projects. More about this exciting project can be found on Lead Graffiti's website.
New Impressions in American Letterpress
A Juried Exhibition
On Display: May through June 30, 2015
Hamilton Wood Type and Printing Museum is dedicated to the the preservation, study, production and printing of wood type. One of the joys of our mission is the preservation through use of our collection including over 1.5 million pieces of wood type. “New Impressions in American Letterpress” is Hamilton’s very first juried exhibition, to showcase exploration and creativity using letterpress and printing techniques. From this age-old tradition, we seek to challenge and inspire new artists to continue the love of letterpress printing. The exhibition is currently on display in the museum gallery until June 30th, 2015. You can view and download a pdf of the Exhibition Catalog, which features the work and biographies of the 37 artists in the show. You can also view and share an online version of the Exhibition Catalog on Issuu.
Workers of the World, Unite!
Russian Civil War Posters 1918-1923 from The Cellini Collection
On Display: March 7 - April 30
Opening Reception: Saturday, March 28th 5 - 7 pm
The exhibit features 25 original works from The Cellini Collection, dating from 1918-1923, featuring full bold color and design through the lithograph technique. Each poster will be accompanied by an English translation of the Russian text. The exhibition will be also accompanied by a scholarly paper about the period by Aaron Hale- Dorrell, PhD. You can read the whole text here.
“Russian propaganda posters show how revolution and civil war turned society upside down. The posters helped popularize the ideology of the Russian Revolution and, in the years following the Russian Civil War (1917–22), remained symbols of the conflict that established the Soviet Union,…Taking power in the name of workers, the new Soviet government under Lenin and the Bolsheviks declared a “dictatorship of the proletariat” and pledged to cast down old elites: aristocrats and capitalists. To shape popular opinion, propaganda posters recast humble toilers as heroes of the factories and mines,” Hale-Dorrell, PhD.
Please join us for the gallery reception Saturday, March 28th from 5-7 pm. This event is free and open to the public. The gallery is located at the museum at 1816 10th Street, Two Rivers, Wisconsin, 54241.
Types of Bugs : Bugs of Type
Letterbugs™ by Bill Moran of Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum
On Display: January 6th - February 28th, 2015
Each Letterbug ™ is hand-printed using type manufactured by Hamilton and is part of the museum's collection of over 1.5 million pieces of wood type; the fine details completing each print come from much smaller metal type, or hand-inking, by Bill, creating unique effects on every print. The prints are an homage to the unique strata that insects and type occupy in their respective kingdoms.
Bill Moran is a third-generation letterpress printer, graphic designer and artistic director of the Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum in Two Rivers, Wisconsin. Hamilton Manufacturing, founded in 1880, was the premier maker of wood type and printing equipment until 1992. Moran's letterbugs have been exhibited throughout the U.S. and Europe and are included in the permanent collection of the Gutenberg Museum in Mainz, Germany, as well as Tipoteca Italiana in Cornuda, Italy.
On Display: November 4th - December 31st, 2014
Tipoteca Italiana is a printing museum in Cornuda, Italy. They are dedicated to the culture of the typeface and the history of typography.The collections come from printing offices and printers located throughout the country. Italian and international teachers contribute to letterpress classes, educational activities and workshops organized by Tipoteca.
Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum and Tipoteca Italiana Fondazione are promoting the Printing Preservation Partnership, a cultural partnership between the two museums, that together are dedicated to:
1. Encourage and spread the knowledge and craft of printing.
2. Develop a shared strategy for the professional training of students, artists & designers.
3. Promote meetings, exhibitions and events in both the Museums, to spread the knowledge of the art of printing and its history.
4. Motivate the mutual exchange of contents of their archives, through printed specimens and materials.
To that mission we have on display a beautifully printed portfolio from Tipoteca Italiana. This show will be up in our gallery until December 31st of this year. Be sure to stop on by and check out this one of a kind show.
Really Big Prints Exhibition
On Display: September 10th - November 22nd, 2014 - Really Big Prints
Closing Reception at the Museum: Saturday, November 22nd, 2014 4-6 pm
Many amazing printmakers from near and far came to UW-Manitowoc on July 21-25, 2014 to create editions of 41 large-scale relief prints. This event has put Manitowoc on the map for printmakers and print collectors alike. The number of participants and duration of the event makes it unique, as well as the opportunity for the printmakers to print a limited edition of a large-scale print, and have it exhibited “hot off the press” here, at the Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum. You can see a documentary of the event here. You can always find out the latest information about the event and show on the Really Big Prints facebook page.
The art of printmaking realizes the oxymoron of the “original multiple.” These images are not reproductions, but original pieces which are conceived and created to exist as a limited edition. The vehicle for creating the multiple is a matrix that can be printed repeatedly. For these prints the matrix was created as a relief. Wood, MDF, linoleum, or plastic was carved or painted on top of to create the image. The matrix was then rolled with printing ink, the raised areas became coated with the ink, while the low areas remained clean and open. Paper was then placed onto top of the inked matrix. The ink was transferred onto the paper with the steamroller.
Studio on Fire is a design workspace and letterpress printer in Minneapolis, MN backed by in-house modern letterpress printing capabilities. They have quality people and quality equipment for some very fine quality work. Studio on Fire will be here at the museum to teach a workshop "What is Modern Letterpress?" on Saturday, September 27th. This show features their commercial letterpress printed work, large custom moveable type that they created for a steamroller printing event (and those large scale prints!), and examples of the plates they use in their printing and specialty finishing methods.
Wood Engravers Network: Triennial Exhibit
On Display: July 1st - August 31st, 2014
Since 1994, a group of printmakers, especially interested in wood engraving, have gathered and formed an organization called the Wood Engravers Network. The group pursues communication, encouragement, and education in this historic, yet contemporary relief medium.
Amalgamated Printers' Association
On Display: May 1st - June 30th, 2014
The Amalgamated Printers' Association was organized in 1958 as a hobby printers group so that members could improve their skills, expand their knowledge, and exchange samples of their letterpress work. Today, the APA consists of both professional and amateur letterpress printers, but our emphasis is still on the exchange of members’ letterpress printing and information on sources of equipment and better printing practices.
On Display: March 10th - April 30th, 2014
Exhibition Reception: Friday, March 21st 4 pm - 7 pm
We are very excited to welcome Eric Woods, the owner of Firecracker Press, to the museum for an opening reception of their work. Join us from 4-7 pm at the museum on Friday, March 21st to meet Eric, talk letterpress, and lay your eyes on some stunning posters and prints. This event is free and open the public.
The Firecracker Press opened shop in February of 2002 as St. Louis, Missouri’s only graphic design studio and letterpress printshop. The Firecracker Press combines antique printing technology with new thinking to design and produce objects that people enjoy seeing and feeling. Using computer design software to conceive ideas, The Firecracker Press still carves woodblocks and prints by hand to produce event posters, business cards, party invitations, advertising and more. The Firecracker Press continues to enjoy a vital presence amongst the thriving Cherokee Street art and culture scene, as well as opening a newly expanded space in Old North, and establishing a non-profit organization: http://
Walker Clinches the Pennant!
On Display: January 18th- March 10th, 2014
Hamilton pitches and Tom Walker knocks it out of the park. The Indy slugger's new pennant exhibit is a home run. An amazing 106 baseball themed, pennant - poster show graces the walls of the Hamilton gallery from January 25th until February 28th. Former Indiana Univsersity design/letterpress instructor Tom Walker created an impressive new exhibit based on baseball terms beginning with the term "Ramicack", the sound of a bat hitting a ball. Catch this one if you can.
Tom Walker has been a professional designer of print and digital media for 20 years servicing clients in health care, manufacturing, higher education, museums and service organizations. He has degrees from Indiana University and the University of Notre Dame. Walker has enjoyed ten years of undergraduate and graduate teaching experience. He taught design for three years at the University of Notre Dame as a concurrent assistant professor and six years for Indiana University as a visiting assistant professor and lecturer. His professional work has received awards from the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), American Advertising Federation (ADDY Awards), Higher Education Marketing Report and the Publicity Club of Chicago. He also has limited edition printed work in private and university collections including California State at San Jose, Stanford, and Indiana University.Tom Walker has been a professional designer of print and digital media for 20 years servicing clients in health care, manufacturing, higher education, museums and service organizations. He has degrees from Indiana University and the University of Notre Dame. Walker has enjoyed ten years of undergraduate and graduate teaching experience. He taught design for three years at the University of Notre Dame as a concurrent assistant professor and six years for Indiana University as a visiting assistant professor and lecturer. His professional work has received awards from the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), American Advertising Federation (ADDY Awards), Higher Education Marketing Report and the Publicity Club of Chicago. He also has limited edition printed work in private and university collections including California State at San Jose, Stanford, and Indiana University.
To see more images of the show at the museum visit our online gallery.
On Display: September 1st- October 31st, 2012
Hammerpress was founded in 1994 by Brady Vest after attending the Kansas City Art Institute. We specialize in letterpress posters, stationery, wedding invitations and various other printed material. You can find them online at their website or their facebook page.
On Display: May 1st- June 30th, 2012
Exhibition Reception: Saturday, May 19th 6 pm - 9 pm
The Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum is proud to present the work of Paul Brown. His broadsides, books, and other letterpress printed works will be on display May 1st through June 30th, 2012. Please join us on the evening of May 19th for an artist's reception from 6-9 pm.
Paul Brown joined the faculty in the Henry Radford Hope School of Fine Arts at Indiana University, Bloomington in 2000 as a professor of Graphic Design after 16 years at the Herron School of Art as a professor of Visual Communication. His work has been included in Communication Arts and Print magazines and in Graphic Design USA, the Annual of the American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA). In addition, Brown has received awards from the Chicago Book Clinic, the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education, the Miniature Book Society, the American Federation of Arts Design, and the Art Directors Club of Indiana. He currently serves as Director and Chair of the Henry Radford Hope School of Fine Arts. He was also a founding member and has served on the board of the Indianapolis chapter of the American Institute of Graphic Arts. His work has been exhibited widely including AIGA’s Fifty Books, New York, Art of the Book, Toronto, and Book Arts: Images and Words, Cambridge, Massachusetts. His most recent work involves limited edition, letterpress printed book works and broadsides.
Starshaped Press: Jennifer Farrell
On Display: March 1st- April 30th, 2012
Exhibition Reception: Saturday, April 28th 7 pm - 10 pm
Jennifer Farrell has been at the press since 1996, operating for the last 12 years as Starshaped Press. She cut her teeth working at the venerable Fireproof Press in Chicago and struck out on her own after that, armed with the ideals of a Luddite and ridiculous notions of keeping letterpress as old school as possible. She hates when presses are incorrectly called ‘letterpresses’ or ‘printers’, when stationery is spelled incorrectly and when two spaces are used after each sentence in digital typesetting.
Starshaped Press focuses on printing everything from business cards and social stationery to music packaging and posters, as well as other one-off or wacky projects that present themselves. Jennifer's work has been repeatedly recognized in How Magazine, and has appeared in print and poster shows throughout the USA and in Europe.