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Book Arts, Paper & Print Making

At ICA, our Book Arts and Papermaking classes celebrate “the potential of paper as a basic material and as a medium for artistic pursuits,” but also as an end in itself.

Our Focus

Program participants work with internationally recognized paper makers, bookbinders, and paper sculptors whose work and experience celebrates the history and techniques of this wonderful and versatile medium.
Workshops focus on hand papermaking, creating paper-based objects, sewn book bindings, and designing pop-ups through our print making workshops & more in Italy.
Excursions are often taken to experience first-hand the art of papermaking by some of the greatest craftsmen in Italy and some of the greatest papermaking facilities & print making workshops in the world.
Our goal is to help students develop an understanding of and an appreciation for book arts and papermaking through innovative teachings, hands-on experiences, and live- action demonstrations.

Recent Workshop Highlights

We are fortunate to be guided by internationally known instructors and state of the art facilities, in this exploration of various manifestations of the paper arts.

Upcoming Book Arts and Papermaking Workshops

Art of Paper with Tom Balbo, Carol Barton, Amanda Degener, Denise Carbone and Roberto Mannino

Read More

The Approach

In our Book Arts and Papermaking workshops & print making workshops we connect to rich – and still quite viable – resources through excursions, demonstrations on historical papermaking equipment (Fabriano), and visits to Monte Castello by some of the greatest craftsmen in Italy!

A master papermaker, Amanda Degener, writes, “Paper is an amazing, surprising material with the potential to be structurally strong or flexible and soft, opaque or translucent, an artwork in itself, a base for drawings and paintings, a sculptural form, or bound into books for writing and illustrations.” 

Italy is rich in its great library and museum holdings of illuminated manuscripts, ancient books, and works on paper. However, in Italy, the cultural significance of works on paper, hand-bound books, and beautiful paper are not exclusive to its historical treasures. Books and a celebration of the beauty of paper are a vital part of Italy’s ongoing artistic traditions and very much - living arts! In fact, cities like Florence, Orvieto, Perugia, and Rome are rich in venerable old shops specializing in the most beautifully bound books, marbled papers, and handmade papers available. On the opposite end of the spectrum exists only one need to visit the quiet, mountain village of Fabriano to find one of the oldest and largest producers of papers in the world, which in fact bears the name of the village. The huge company, nonetheless still produces some of the finest watercolor and drawing papers in the world.

Book Art/Papermaking Courses

Our Art of Paper Workshop is an intensive, multi-level, experience suitable for introductory as well as advanced work. Students will be signing up for the complete session, with sixteen hours of instruction in each area: hand papermaking, creating paper-based objects, sewn bookbindings, and designing pop-ups. The session will also include field trips to the Fabriano Paper Mill and to the city of Florence, along with several other excursion stops. In addition, Amanda will be offering optional morning Tai Chi sessions.

Included Features* of Book Arts/Papermaking Programs

Book Arts/Papermaking Studio/Workspace

Our Book Arts/Papermaking workshop/studio is located in our spectacular 14th c palazzo that houses our artists' studios. These are available on a 24/7 basis. Here, we accommodate participant needs with state-of-the-art equipment and ample room for work.


Throughout the program, excursions are scheduled to extraordinary destinations around Umbria, Lazio, and Tuscany. See the course itinerary or our Calendar for this year’s schedule of field trips. We also offer additional, topical guided trips upon request for an additional fee in addition to natural areas, shopping, wine tasting, and cultural events and festivals.

Readings, Presentations, and Performances in the Teatro Concordia, and Central Square

At the close of the session, participants have the option of participating in a public exhibition of their work. This provides participants an important professional-development opportunity to participate in a public exhibition in Europe attended by an exceptionally well-informed audience. Exhibitions are held in our In Bocca al Lupo gallery, final performances and readings, discussions, and presentations in the Teatro Concordia. And the central piazza overlooking the Tiber valley. These events are well attended by the community at the school and by residents of the village and region. Each event features a fully catered reception with wine and other beverages as well as light snacks prepared by our kitchen staff. The sale of work by artists is permitted and encouraged without commission.
*All of our workshops and retreats include Airport Transfers Upon Arrival and Departure, Single or Double Occupancy Accommodations, and Three Meals of Typical Umbrian Cuisine Daily. To view a full list of included amenities, follow the link below.
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    Photography Credit: Sarah Slade
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