Top 10 Highlights at the Chicago Art Book Fair 2017

During November 16-19, Chicago hosted its first annual Chicago Art Book Fair, featuring over 100 independent publishers, small presses, comic and zine-makers, printmakers, and more. Taking over two floors of the stunning Chicago Athletic Association Hotel, the amount of incredibly unique and innovative artists and publishers kept the crowd buzzing with eager curiosity and excitement, while not being too overwhelming. Its a chance to meet individual illustrators and artists as well as small printing presses that publish everything from short story collections to risograph printed zines. Not just from Chicago, this international book fair had an endless amount of talent, making the top 10 highlights difficult to narrow down. Take a look at these 10 amazing artists and publishers who’s work blew the crowd away!

1. Cold Cube Press / Mount Analogue

Cold Cube Press is a printing service based in Seattle, Washington that prints using a risograph process, which is a process similar to a silkscreen as it prints one color at a time, making their book Cold Cube 003 (featured above) even more impressive! It features the artwork of over 30 artists and poets. Sharing the booth with Cold Cube are their neighbors and collaborators, Mount Analogue. Mount Analogue has their hands in so many amazing projects, as they are a interdisciplinary publishing studio, installation gallery, small press book shop while also hosting community events.

2. Extra Vitamins

Extra Vitamins is the multi-disciplinary creative studio of Julia Belamarich and Kyle Garfield that emphasizes the intersection of art and design. They produce unique and playfully designed apparell, tote bags, illustrated books, zines, and more.

3. Pegacorn Press

Pegacorn Press is a queer and feminist project ran by artist Caroline Paquita based in Brooklyn, New York. They publish and produce zines, comics, and other print ephemera along with patches and even plush dolls.  Much of the work produced is a collaboration between Paquita herself and other artists.

4. Marnie Galloway

Marnie Galloway is a cartoonist and illustrator hailing from Chicago, who works primarily in fiction and poetic comics. Her work In the Sounds and Seas, which was featured at the fair, is an intricate and striking, black and white, wordless graphic novel. 

5. The Bettys

The Bettys is an art collective that produces and publishes zines and curates events in and around New York City. Their work primarily focus on supporting women, people of color, and LBTQ communities. Other products produced by the collective include catchy and powerful pins and stickers.

6. Chloe Perkis

Chloe Perkis is a Chicago-based artist who creates risograph prints, comics, zines, and pins that often feature a strong female presence. On top of creating her own printed ephemera, she has also curates exhibitions. One of which, a show titled Sucias, had a unique zine printed in conjunction with the exhibition that was available at Perkis' booth. 

7. Authorized to Work in the U.S.

Authorized to Work in the U.S. is a multi-disciplinary project run by artist and publisher Cem Kocyildrim. The artist sells his incredible work on a mobile art gallery, the "Riso Bike," which he peddles around NYC. Kocyildrim's personal work shines light on issues surrounding immigrant life and the U.S.

8. Floss Editions

Floss Editions is a small printing press that publishes books, zines, and apparel of amazing quality, with brilliantly bold colors, that feature a variety of talented artists. They are based out of Oakland, California, but publish work by artists all over the US.

9. Perfectly Acceptable

Perfectly Acceptable Press is a publishing house and risograph printing studio, located in the fair's host city of Chicago. They publish small edition zines, comics, and other art books, with their content and aesthetic being incredibly diverse. 

10 Jamiyla Lowe

Jamiyla Lowe is an artist and illustrator based out of Toronto, whose quality work can be described as fantastical and mystical. Her impressively rendered creations can be found in the form of limited edition prints, wall hangings, tote bags, and t-shirts.


Featured image courtesy of Mount Analogue/Cold Cube Press