While the practical fate of the book remains unclear, as an art form, the book thrives now more than ever. Bookworks of West Asheville hosts the first annual juried exhibition of the Southeast Guild of Bookworkers, up through Feb. 24. While books are traditionally valued only by the information they contain, the Guild unites papermakers, bookbinders, calligraphers, and those who hand-set letterpress type into an eclectic show that celebrates the book in all its varied and unexpected physical forms. Viewers can handle the books, the formats of which range from blank journals to scrolls and volvelles. There are also books with traditional narratives, such as the challenges of being a military spouse, or an exploration of Theia Mania (literally “divine madness,” it also describes the instant feeling of connection to a stranger). Expect to spend some time both reading and appreciating every well-tuned detail of these beautiful objects. Bookworks is open Monday through Friday from 1 to 5 p.m. at 428 ½ Haywood Road. ashevillebookworks.com.
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