CBAA Invites you to the Book Arts Series presentation on Saturday, June 24!

Title: TOBACCO HANDS: Habits of Mutuality
Date: Saturday, June 24 at 12PM EST
Presenters: Cynthia Marsh and Marnie Powers-Torrey
Moderator: Anika Schneider

A large, textual sculpture, Tobacco Hands was produced over a period of three years by visual artists & collaborators Cynthia Marsh and Marnie Powers-Torrey. The work is a 24-page, 8’ tall, three-dimensional narrative that celebrates the stories of four long-term Dark-Fired tobacco families living in Montgomery County, TN.

The printed quilt pages present the oral histories of tobacco-growing families living in the Black Patch region of northern Tennessee and southern Kentucky. Since the early 1800’s several thousand acres of land at the base of the Cumberland Plateau known as the Black Patch have produced the coveted dark-fired, sweet tobacco used primarily for snuff. Tobacco Hands weaves a complex tale that follows three paths of inquiry: 1) narratives from independent, multi-generational tobacco farmers and their families; 2) traditional Southern quilt patterns selected to represent the tobacco families profiled; 3) reasons why dark-fire tobacco production grew to become as the agro-industrial foundation supporting financial growth in Middle Tennessee at the turn of the 20th Century.

The intention of “Tobacco Hands / the Habits of Mutuality” is not meant to glorify tobacco addiction; the health risks and social stigma of smoking and chewing tobacco are real. However, the long history of this native species, N. tobaccum, both as a cash crop and a way of life in the Cumberland region, is also an important component of our history.

Registration Link:

2023 Call for Nominations

The Nominating and Membership Committee seeks nominations from the membership for members to serve on the College Book Art Association (CBAA) Board of Directors beginning in January 2024.

Nominations are due August 20, 2023

Click here for more information.

Call for Proposals

The Bill Stewart Project Award was established to honor the legacy of Bill Stewart, a longtime supporter and dealer of contemporary fine press and artists’ books. In service to Bill’s fascination with the physical attributes of the book, CBAA invites members to submit proposals for the Bill Stewart Project Award in Book Arts, which provides up to $500 in support of new creative projects and/or to enable the progress and completion of ongoing projects. Learn more...

Proposals will be accepted through September 1, 2023.

CBAA Change of Date for Conferences/Meetings/Symposiums

“To enjoy warmer weather together and avoid scheduling conflicts amongst organizations, CBAA will convene all future symposia, meetings and conferences in early June. We hope this change from our traditional gatherings in early January will make travel easier and the holiday season longer for our members. Please reach out to with any questions about the change.”

Save the Dates:

June 7–8, 2024: In-Person Meeting & Members Exhibition at Rollins College, Winter Park, Florida 

June 2025: In-Person Conference at University of Wisconsin, Madison 

CBAA Name Update


We are pleased to announce that the College Book Art Association will be renamed CBAA. CBAA’s brand identity and website will be updated shortly to reflect this name change. We will continue to support Book Art initiatives in academia while expanding our support to all book artists. This change will allow us to be more inclusive and fully represent the community we serve. 

We hope you have been enjoying the Book Art Lecture Series that started via Zoom in September 2022. Stay tuned for additional programming in the new year to keep your book art passion going strong.

Thank you for supporting CBAA!


Sarah Matthews


President of CBAA


Please see the CBAA Event Calendar for a full list of postings.



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Read the most recent posts from our BOOK ART THEORY blog here.


Mervi Pakaste is our featured artist this month.



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