Post-industrial histories, technical memories and art practices A Trans-disciplinary Seminar


October 13, 2021– January 19, 2022


Fall Semester 2021


according to study plan (for students)




5 meetings, 3 hours (3 x 45 min), Wednesday afternoons 14h45 – 17h00 (CH time) and 13.45H – 16.00H (PT time)




open call


up to 25, students (according to their study plan); professors or researchers (according to the lifelong learning University regulations)

Attendance policies:

10% absences only allowed

Paper records, folds, supports, melts, indexes; it preserves writing and blank spaces, conceptual instructions, identity information, filing cards, administrative records, today’s news; it is cut pages or surfaces, it is folded to create mock-ups. The post-industrial traces of paper mills re-emerge in recent artistic and decolonial debates; they affect reflections on the future of books and reading.

The transdisciplinary seminar Paper Trails inaugurates the eponymous research project of the IPT Instituto Politécnico de Tomar / Technology, Restoration and Arts Enhancement Center (TECHN&ART) (Portugal) and the EDHEA - The Valais School of Art (Switzerland). Open to teachers, researchers, and students from the two universities, the seminar brings together knowledge and ongoing research on and around paper, in its broadest and most material sense.

The seminar consists of four interventions related to the cultural history of paper as an administrative support; as related to the history of books and artistic practices; as a document and support for partitions and conceptual archives between dance and design; and the material dimension - chemical, conservation - of paper. The conferences will be followed by Q&A and accompanied by bibliographical references.

The last meeting will be dedicated to feedback on the works proposed by the participants in response to the themes of the course. A selection of the papers/works proposed by the participants will be considered by the selection committee for the conference planned in Tomar in May 2022.

Students will be awarded ECTS based on attendance and assignment submission. For the Professors and researchers who may which to attend the course on a Lifelong Learning perspective, an attendance certificate will be issued in January.

Seminar ONE,
October 13, 2021
Dagmar Riedel, Limited Storage

Seminar TWO,
November 3, 2021
Leonor Loureiro, The Paper World and the Paper Conservator

Seminar THREE,
November 24, 2021
Sarah Burkhalter, Dancing on paper

Seminar FOUR,
December 15, 2021
Marcelline Delbecq, White Paper

Seminar FIVE,
January 19, 2022
Feed-back on the participants’ works


Print/Book/Reading Culture

Eco, U., et J.C. Carrière. N’espérez pas vous débarrasser des livres. Grasset, 2009.
Edwards, B.F.R. Paper Talk: A History of Libraries, Print Culture, and Aboriginal Peoples in Canada Before 1960. Scarecrow Press, 2005.
Eisenstein, E.L. The Printing Revolution in Early Modern Europe. Canto Classics. Cambridge University Press, 2012.
MacPhee, J. Paper Politics: Socially Engaged Printmaking Today. PM Press, 2009.
Mak, B. How the Page Matters. Studies in book and print culture. University of Toronto Press, 2011.
Manguel, A. A Reader on Reading. Yale University Press, 2010.
Manguel, Alberto. A history of reading. Penguin, 2014.
———. The library at night. Yale University Press, 2008.
Mattern, J. The Printing Press: An Information Revolution. Technology That Changed the World. PowerKids Press, 2002.
McLaughlin, K. Paperwork: Fiction and Mass Mediacy in the Paper Age. Critical Authors and Issues. University of Pennsylvania Press, Incorporated, 2011.
Morris, William. « A Note by William Morris on his Aims in Founding the Kelmscott Press ». édité par William S. Peterson, 75 78. University of California Press, 2020.
Petroski, H. The Book on the Bookshelf. Vintage. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2010.
Riedel, Dagmar. « Of making many copies there is no end: The digitization of manuscripts and printed books in Arabic script ». In The Digital Humanities and Islamic & Middle East Studies, 65 92. De Gruyter, 2016.
Riedel, Dagmar A. « Books in Arabic Script ». A Companion to the History of the Book, 2019, 315 33.

Paper as an Artistic Medium

Acocella, A. Paper design. Material Design Essays. Altralinea edizioni, 2015. Ban, S., R. Miyake, I. Luna, et L.A. Gould. Shigeru Ban: Paper in Architecture. Rizzoli International Publications, 2009.
Costantini, M. Face au mur?: Papiers peints contemporains. Infolio., 2011.
Davey, M. The Problem of Reading. Documents book. Vermont College, 2003.
Eekhout, M., F. Verheijen, et R. Visser. Cardboard in Architecture. Research in architectural engineering series. IOS Press, 2008.
Enckell, J., J.E. ed. Towards Visibility: Exhibiting Contemporary Drawing 1964-80. Roven éditions/Musée Jenisch Vevey, 2015.
Klotz, H., Paper Architecture: New Projects from the Soviet Union. Random House Incorporated, 1990.
Ludovico, A. Post-digital Print: The Mutation of Publishing Since 1894. Onomatopee (Cabinet Project). Ram Publications & Dist, 2013.
Maroto et al., Artist Novels: The Book Lovers Publication.
Pinto, Roberto. Artisti di carta Territori di confine tra arte e letteratura. Postmediabooks. Milan, 2016.
Poggi, C. In Defiance of Painting: Cubism, Futurism, and the Invention of Collage. Yale Publications in the History of Art. Yale University Press, 1992.
Rosenberg, J.E. Wastepaper Modernism: Twentieth-Century Fiction and the Ruins of Print. Oxford Mid-Century Studies. Oxford University Press, 2021.
Schmidt, P., et N. Stattmann. Unfolded: Paper in Design, Art, Architecture and Industry. Birkhäuser, 2012.
Slavin, J., Canadian Conservation Institute, Royal Ontario Museum, et Art Gallery of Ontario. Looking at Paper: Evidence & Interpretation: Symposium Proceedings, Toronto 1999. Government of Canada Publications. Canadian Conservation Institute, 2001.
Thoburn, N. Anti-Book: On the Art and Politics of Radical Publishing. Cultural Critique Books. University of Minnesota Press, 2016.
Thomas, J., et Paul Jackson. On Paper: New Paper Art. Merrell., 2001.


Haggith, M. Paper Trails: From Trees to Trash - The True Cost of Paper. Ebury Publishing, 2008.
Hunter, Dard. Papermaking: the history and technique of an ancient craft. Courier Corporation, 1978.
Medioli, Chiara. Cotone, conigli e invisibili segni d’acqua. 750 anni di storia della carta a Fabriano. Corraini., 2013.
Pedemonte, E. La carta: storia, produzione, degrado, restauro. Elementi (Venice, Italy). Marsilio, 2008.
Spicer, A.D. The Paper Trade; a Descriptive and Historical Survey of the Paper Trade from the Commencement of the Nineteenth Century. Alpha Editions, 2020.
Tschudin, P.F., et F. Peccol. La carta. Storia, materiali, tecniche. Opere varie. Storia e Letteratura, 2012.
Weeks, L.H. A History of Paper-Manufacturing in the United States, 1690-1916. ????, 2009.

Paper as a Medium

Bloom, J.M. Paper Before Print: The History and Impact of Paper in the Islamic World. ACLS Humanities E-Book. Yale University Press, 2001.
McLuhan, M. Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man. Routledge classics. Routledge, 2001.


Basbanes, N.A. On Paper: The Everything of Its Two-Thousand-Year History. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2013.
Baker, N. Double Fold: Libraries and the Assault on Paper. A Vintage Original. Vintage, 2002.
Benjamin, W., M. Jay, et Arion Press. Unpacking My Library: A Talk about Book Collecting. Arion Press, 2010.
Bolter, J.D. Writing Space: Computers, Hypertext, and the Remediation of Print. Taylor & Francis, 2001.
Derrida, J. Paper Machine. Cultural memory in the present. Stanford University Press, 2005.
Glaubinger, J., E.H. Turner, et Cleveland Museum of Art. Paper Now: Bent, Molded, and Manipulated. Cleveland Museum of Art. Cleveland Museum of Art, 1986.
Kurlansky, M. Paper: Paging Through History. W. W. Norton, 2016.
Nunberg, G., et U. Eco. The Future of the Book. Market Economy. University of California Press, 1996.
Ong, W.J. Orality and Literacy. New Accents. Taylor & Francis, 2013.
Sansom, I. Paper: An Elegy. HarperCollins Publishers, 2013.


Caplan, J., et J. Torpey. Documenting Individual Identity: The Development of State Practices in the Modern World. Princeton University Press, 2018.
Coggan, P. Paper Promises: Money, Debt and the New World Order. Penguin Books Limited, 2011.
Graeber, D. The Utopia of Rules: On Technology, Stupidity, and the Secret Joys of Bureaucracy. Melville House, 2015.
Sellen, A.J., et R.H.R. Harper. The Myth of the Paperless Office. The MIT Press. MIT Press, 2003.