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Monday, May 28, 2012

By Whim

By Appointment or By Whim, the Kenspeckle Letterpress is open for business ( I should have checked on that before locating it in Duluth last Friday.We could only gaze in the glass between the door and artwork at the 19th Century presses and typefaces. Fortunately for our family, founders Rick Allen and Marian Lasky were in the Sivertson Gallery when we stopped there, and we were invited to experience the 5 cent tour with Rick. Though he thought he would bore our three sons, they had oodles of questions and were completely engaged in his stories, explanations, and processes. Each found various fascinating things and were astounded by Rick's depth and breadth of knowledge. We loved learning about upper case and lower case, Mark Twain, the three presses used for Rick's work, and the way some typefaces need brass and copper spacers filled in for fonts with uneven spaces. They were amazed at the numerous blocks used to create just a single illustration for Joyce Sidman's Dark Emperor and Other Poems of the Night. We experienced far more than a 5 cent tour.

Do check out the video recently created for the Perfect Duluth Day series: It will give you a better idea of what happens in this incredible space.


  1. such a great video. rick is so gentle, wise, and good-humored.

  2. Am so glad you happened upon him. One of my favorite people. Could stay in his studio for hours, just watching!

  3. A very interesting video which makes me want to enjoy more artwork.