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FLEET LIBRARY | Research Guides

Rhode Island School of Design

Annual Student Artists’ Book Juried Contest and Exhibition: 10th Contest & Exhibit


Entries will be on exhibit on the 1st floor and balcony of the library through May 10, 2024.


Each year, Special Collections at RISD Library hosts a juried student artists' book contest to promote engagement with the book arts, investigation of the Library's artists' book collection, and creative production in the book form at RISD. The contest and accompanying exhibition attract on average 45 submissions from RISD undergraduate, graduate, and continuing education students. All of the entries are displayed in the annual Library exhibit. A team of RISD faculty members and professional artists serves as juror(s), selecting prize winners from the submissions. All purchase prizes receive a cash reward, and the selected student-made artists' books become part of the Library's collection. This year is the 9th installment of this program.

History and renaming of the Contest

In 2014 when I first started in Special Collections we began conversations about outreach and the idea of an artists’ book contest was born. The late Jan Baker, Graphic Design Professor was one of the first jurors for the original contest in 2015. After the contest we debriefed and Jan asked what was the greatest obstacle for this contest to continue. I said money. A few months pasted and I was informed that we had received an anonymous gift so that we could continue the contest. I would find out later, it was Jan’s gift.

In Jan’s words “The aim of this competition is to encourage faculty in all mediums at RISD to use the Artists’ Book Collection as inspiration for their classes; in addition, for students to be stimulated by the collection to create their own Artists’ Books.” 

Starting with the 5th year, the contest is named for Jan Baker and Laurie Whitehill, the former Special Collections Librarian. Recognizing their legacy and their combined 60 years of dedication and passion in the field of Book Arts.


Claudia Covert, Special Collections Librarian

Awards 2024

Purchase Prizes:



Honorable Mentions:



Exhibit Opening and Awards
Thursday, February 29, 2024 at 6:30pm. 


We are very happy to announce that Ian Cozzens BArch 05 is this year's juror.  

Ian Cozzens is a visual artist who makes prints, sculptures, quilts, zines, spaces, collections, & shelves, among other things. He graduated from the RISD Architecture Department in 2005. He learned how to screenprint from friends in Providence, and from 2000 to the mid-2010s, he printed many posters promoting underground shows and events around town. He currently works at New Urban Arts, an after-school arts studio for high schoolers, where he has been the Resident Artist Mentor in Printmaking for the past nine years. He maintains the silkscreen studio there and works with teenagers to realize their visions in print, and also tries to instill in them good studio practices and hopefully... amazing cleanup skills! 

At RISD, Ian was introduced to bookbinding through a Wintersession class and then by working in Tech Services at the library, building special boxes for fragile books and nerding out about binding styles and archival materials with co-workers there. As a screenprinter, he loves analog & semi-obsolete methods of creating film positives: hand-drawing letterforms, cutting intricate Rubylith stencil films, and working with Rapidograph ink on mylar. 

Over the past ten years, he has been building installations incorporating silkscreened paper, wallpaper, and text, as well as shelves, boxes, and constructions, laid out by making perspectival projection drawings by hand. His interests in pattern, geometry, and history have led him to the craft of patchwork and quiltmaking, elements of which have also become part of the installations (as well as part of his daily life). Ian is always trying to bring things together and make it all make more sense, seeking out some kind of unity of content with form, craft, and existence.

General Information

RISD undergraduate, graduate, and continuing education students are

invited to enter an artists' book they have completed in the past year

(December 2022 - December 2023).


The winning purchase prizes will be added to the

Fleet Library at RISD's Artists' Book collection.

About the Entries

  • All entries must be original work by the artist.
  • Only one entry per student.
  • Due to the size of our exhibit cases, if we receive more than 50 entries, the exhibit will be curated by the library staff.


 Look for the next call in Fall 2024.   Thank you!

Pick Up

Items not added to the Fleet Library at RISD collection can be picked after the exhibit comes down (May 10) and by the end of the semester (May 26). If this is not possible please contact us to make arrangements.

For More Information, Please Contact:

Claudia Covert

Special Collections

Fleet Library, 2nd Floor, Room 201



By submitting an entry from, you are acknowledging that you are exhibiting your work at your own risk, and releasing RISD, and their employees, from any and all liability for my work. In addition, you are granting permission for any images, video, or other digital forms of the submitted work to be used for publicity, promotion or any other purposes deemed desirable by the Fleet Library at RISD. This includes, but is not limited to, use within the library or RISD, library websites, and social networking websites. You also understand that if your entry is selected, it will be included in the Library’s Collection and will not be returned.