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THE BIBLIO FILE is one of the world's leading podcasts about "the book" and an inquiry into the wider world of book culture. Hosted by Nigel Beale it features wide ranging conversations with authors, poets, book publishers, booksellers, book editors, book collectors, book makers, book scholars, book critics, book designers, book publicists, literary agents and other certified bibliophiles.

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Jan 20, 2018

Gaylord Schanilec is an American wood engraver, printer, designer and illustrator. He is the proprietor of Midnight Paper Sales press.

Schanilec has "set the standard for contemporary artist’s books over the last 30 years." His highly collected and unique fine press books explore his interests and experiences as well as his hometown Wisconsin landscape and community. From farming culture and the rivers of the Mississippi to an exhaustive inventory of the 24 species of trees surrounding his home and studio in Stockholm, Wisconsin, Schanilec’s wood engravings illustrate local landscapes, historical anecdotes and natural science investigations. He has also featured New York City in two books. Lac des Pleurs is a study of the 22-mile length of the upper Mississippi River known as Lake Pepin. 

He is currently working on My Mighty Journey, a book inspired by the 12,000-year-long journey of Saint Anthony Falls, the only natural waterfall on the Mississippi River, from Saint Paul to Minneapolis — a distance of ten miles.

Schanilec is a frequent lecturer and leads workshops at the Minnesota Center for Book Arts and the University of Iowa. His works can be found in the collections of major academic institutions, libraries and museums.

I met with Gaylord at his workshop in St. Paul to talk about his life and work.