Portfolio > Living with Dying: Grief, Loss, Beauty and Joy

untitled, wire, cloth, paper, 6.5 x 6.5 inches, circa 1965 and 2010

Tracy Honn is a printing history educator, curator, and letterpress printer living in Madison Wisconsin. She is retired from the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she directed the Silver Buckle Press. In 2020 Honn co-curated Speaking of Book Arts; Oral Histories from UW-Madison held at the Chazen Museum of Art, and also co-founded Quarantine Public Library. Honn is president of the executive board of directors for Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum (Two Rivers, Wisconsin).

About her (untitled) piece Tracy says:
My father, Earl Edward Honn, made this miniature clothes hanger for me when I was little and played with Barbie dolls. He made a dozen or more of them, and by a miracle (named Barbara, my mother) many were saved. As an adult, when I looked at them--all surprisingly uniform yet each one pleasingly distinctive--I saw they were drawings in the air that came from Earl’s beautiful mind.

Sometime after my dad died in 2008 I decided to mount and frame the half dozen hangers I still had. I secured them to book board with linen cloth, and used paper I’d made as the lining. The skills I learned in bookbinding remind me of Daddy’s steady hand.