Julie Chen

Julie Chen is a Book Artist who lives in Berkeley, CA. After completing a degree in printmaking at the University of California, Berkeley, Chen became intrigued by the language, equipment, and materials of Book Arts and entered the Book Arts program at Mills College.

Book Arts encompass binding, letterpress, printing and printmaking, combined with three-dimensional art. The finished products are unique three-dimensional pieces of art that include text.

Chen’s books are considered exceptional for their craft and quality, while playfully teasing the conceptual limits of books. Always mindful of the reader who will interact with her structures, she selects paper to delight the eye and appeal to the touch, while creating forms that function as “vessels” for text, images, ideas and meaning. Despite the nontraditional forms it often occupies, the text in Chen’s creations is letterpress printed.

In addition to teaching Book Arts at Mills College and operating Flying Fish Press, Chen regularly lectures on bookmaking and teaches workshops nationwide.

Julie Chen is featured in the Process episode of Craft in America.


Julie Chen working in studio, 2002

Julie Chen, Panorama, Sibila Savage photograph

Julie Chen, Ode to a Grand Staircase, in collaboration with Barbara Tetenbaum, Sibila Savage photograph

Julie Chen talks about how she discovered book arts.

Julie Chen talks about her process.

See objects from Craft in America: Expanding Traditions, a seven-city traveling exhibition that ran from 2007-2009, and other Virtual Exhibitions

Important craft artists are featured in the Book. Learn more

Purchase the DVDs or view the programs online

Click to see a list of over 4 hours of video available online