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Field Trip to the Charlene Matthews Bindery

  • 5720 Melrose Avenue Los Angeles, CA, 90038 United States (map)

From time to time we offer Ruskin Art Club members, family, and friends, opportunities to tour historic sites in the LA area, visit the studios of artists and crafts persons, and view rare art and book collections.

Field trips are free of charge. Space is particularly limited for this field trip. Reserve early! We need an accurate count of those planning to attend, so please send your RSVP (firm) as soon as possible to: ; or call (310) 640-0710.

These “behind the scenes” looks at the work of local artists, crafts persons, curators, scholars, and historic preservationists not only enrich our life together as a cultural association, but are a vital part of our mission to “see” the city and to engage with the many artists who embody Ruskin’s vision of the integration of art and life.

Using materials as Victorian ceiling tile, kangaroo leather, and a fish-eye lens, the one-woman show that is Charlene Matthews Bindery outfits books in a cramped shop sandwiched between a Mexican restaurant and a florist. A blur of red hair in an electric blue studio, Matthews flits among her 19th-century binding tools, which include a huge press, a paper-cutting guillotine, and ‘job backers’ (steel leviathans that grip and cut). In her restoration work, she cloaks hard covers in vintage silk, ribbon and leather finished so finely they look translucent.
— (LA Magazine)

Charlene, a longtime member of the Ruskin Art Club, is a multifaceted book artist. In addition to her highly regarded restoration work, she also designs artist books, book boxes, innovative artist installations, and collaborative projects; she also teaches classes in bookbinding and other aspects of book art at her studio. Samples of Charlene's work are highlighted on her website: