UK Happenings

Exhibition Celebrates the 'Art of Book Design'

photo of "The Art of Book Design" poster
photo of Ron Davis and Crystal Wilkinson at Wild Fig

LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 11, 2017) As a reader embarks on the journey of a new story, the art and design of a book is the first encounter of the adventure that lies ahead.  

A free public exhibition coming to the University of Kentucky this week celebrates this work. "The Art of Book Design," will open with a reception and talk by Ron Davis and his partner, Crystal Wilkinson, owners of Wild Fig Books & Coffee in Lexington, from 4-6 p.m. Thursday, April 13, in the Great Hall of the Margaret I. King Library Building.

Davis and Wilkinson will speak on art, design, books and their lives and careers as artists, during a reception to celebrate the award-winning designs of the Association of American University Presses (AAUP) Book, Jacket, and Journal Show.      

Crystal Wilkinson, who was recently named one of the “Southerners of the Year” by Southern Living magazine, is the author of three books for which her partner, Ron Davis, designed the covers: "The Birds of Opulence," "Blackberries, Blackberries" and "Water Street." "The Birds of Opulence" is the recipient of the 2016 Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence as well as the 2016 Weatherford Award for Appalachian Fiction.

The AAUP Book, Jacket, and Journal Show will be on display in the Great Hall of King Library April 12–28. 

Since 1965, the AAUP Book, Jacket, and Journal Show has fulfilled its mission to "honor and instruct": honoring the design and production teams whose work furthers a long tradition of excellence in book design, and — through a traveling exhibit and acclaimed annual catalog of selected entries — visually teaching the tenets of good design.

The Book, Jacket, and Journal Show is a juried design competition, open only to AAUP member publishers. Every autumn the call-for-entries is distributed, and each January, the jurors gather in AAUP's New York offices to examine hundreds of submissions and select the very best examples of book, journal and cover designs. Jurors are esteemed interior and cover designers appointed by the annual show committee.

This year's show is presented by UK Libraries and University Press of Kentucky (UPK). UPK is the scholarly publisher for the Commonwealth of Kentucky, representing a consortium that includes all of the state universities, five private colleges, and two historical societies. The press’ editorial program focuses on the humanities and the social sciences. Offices for the administrative, editorial, production and marketing departments of the press are found at UK, which provides financial support toward the operating expenses of the publishing operation through the UK Libraries.

UK is the University for Kentucky. At UK, we are educating more students, treating more patients with complex illnesses and conducting more research and service than at any time in our 150-year history. To read more about the UK story and how you can support continued investment in your university and the Commonwealth, go to: #uk4ky #seeblue