Book Arts Center Presents Oct. 17 Lecture by Master Bookbinder and Conservator

September 25, 2019
Peter D. Verheyen will deliver the 48th Susan Garretson Swartzburg ’60 Memorial Book Arts Lecture and also present selections of his bindings.
headshot of Peter Verheyen

The Wells College Book Arts Center is pleased to welcome noted bookbinder, conservator and librarian Peter D. Verheyen to campus, where he will present the 48th Susan Garretson Swartzburg '60 Memorial Book Arts Lecture. His talk, titled "A Bookbinder's Journey: My Analog and Virtual Life in the Book Arts," will be held on Thursday, Oct. 17, at 6:00 p.m. in the Hostetter Lecture Hall (Stratton Hall 209). Admission is free and all are welcome.

Verheyen will give an illuminating talk about his career as a bookbinder, conservator and academic librarian. Along with examples of his work, he will discuss the materials and techniques he uses to craft his bindings, with selections of his bindings for attendees to explore. He will also discuss in depth a recent project which ties together the many threads of his long and accomplished career.

Verheyen was inspired to begin his life's work as a work-study student in the conservation lab at Johns Hopkins University's library, after which he completed a museum internship and formal apprenticeship in Germany, with continuing conservation studies in Switzerland. Returning to the U.S., he worked as a binder in private practice and academic libraries, ultimately establishing the conservation lab at Syracuse University, where he currently works as a librarian.

Peter D. Verheyen has acted as exhibitions and publicity chair for the Guild of Book Workers, and his bindings have been widely exhibited throughout the U.S. and abroad. In 1994, he founded Book_Arts-L, an active email listserv with nearly 3,000 subscribers worldwide, and the Book Arts Web, a comprehensive resource for the book arts community that links to book arts-related sites on the web, including educational opportunities, professional organizations, tutorials, reference materials and image galleries. From 2004 to 2014, he and other colleagues founded and published the Bonefolder: An e-Journal for the Bookbinder and Book Artist. He was awarded the Guild of Book Workers' Laura Young Award for service to the organization in 2009, and honored with their Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016.

This lecture is the 48th in a series named for Susan Garretson Swartzburg. Working closely with Wells faculty and staff, Swartzburg helped to organize the press, bindery and other components that became Wells College's Book Arts Center, which celebrates its 26th anniversary this year. She served on the Book Center's advisory board and, in memory of her father, established a biannual book arts lecture series for which she raised funds and organized events.

About the Wells College Book Arts Center

Since its founding, the Wells Book Arts Center has become a unique center of production and study in the book arts, with highly sought-after facilities and vibrant year-round programming. In addition to integrating into the academic curriculum of the Visiting Writers Series, the center operates the Wells College Press, hosts a lecture series and draws accomplished book artists to campus every summer for the Summer Book Arts Institute. For more information please visit

About Wells College

Wells College is a nationally recognized private coeducational liberal arts college located in Aurora, New York, on the eastern shore of Cayuga Lake. Wells, which recently celebrated its 150th anniversary, has remained committed to providing a quality education to students through small, interactive classes in multiple disciplines and engaging coursework relevant to life in a changing world. Integrated hands-on learning opportunities, a connected community, and diverse educational opportunities give students the ability to take part in their own educations and prepare them to be active citizens and leaders. More info at

Our mission is for every student to think critically, reason wisely and act humanely as they cultivate meaningful lives. On our beautiful lakeside campus, students gain the knowledge, skills and experience to create their own unique path.

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