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email us:
info (at) spareresidency (dot) com

We're located in Pilsen, Chicago

Printed Matter

Boneshaker Books

please email for stocking inquiries.

Working Knowledge
Tan & Loose
Lauren Anderson
Dante Carlos

Steffen Bunte (Germany)
Megan Hopkins (UK)
Caitlin Warner (USA)
Nathaniel Surrey (USA)
Kit Leffler (USA)
Gabriele Sedda (Italy)
Maarten Boekweit (Netherlands)
Lu Zhang (USA)



S P A R   E

                  is a Risograph printer and small-scale publisher.

    We are capable of handling most aspects           of

book making               from design to binding.
Please email       if you are interested in

                    working     with us.


The Risograph GR3750 stencil printer         is the basis

of SPARE. Please take     a few minutes to understand

    its capabilities before inquiring about printing or             applying for the residency. The Risograph is best

when its imperfections can be appreciated. It will often look a little rough, misaligned, and handmade. Similar to screenprinting you print     one color at a time which brings alignment, overprinting, and other layer techniques into play. When printing multiple colors the alignment will never

    be precise. Our machine is older and has
its quirks. These qualities can be seen as limitations, but we prefer to exploit, challenge and play with the capabilities of the Risograph machine.

The process starts with scanning
    a black and white image from which a stencil is cut

                                and wrapped around an ink
Paper to be printed is fed         under the rotating drum which lays down the ink and spits
            the result out the other side. The machine is

especially good
    at printing a large number of copies         cheaply and             quickly (not necessarily

the goal         of what we do but that's     how it was used commercially).

For more info and images please visit the Risograph wikipedia page and our store or blog to see some of what we have printed.


            The GR3750 prints one color
at a time. If wanting to print multiple colors     they must first be     sep ar a ted and printed     in black    

for scanning     to the Risograph.
                        Ink colors are changed by switching     out the large drum which     contains the tube of
    ink. We currently have     red, black, brown, burgundy, green,     teal, and blue. The color bar    

below shows our colors but this     changes so please ask
        if you need a specific color.


We keep a variety
            of simple paper on hand     but please arrange         for selecting paper well in advance of printing

        if you require something specific     for your         job.


We are a custom printer

    and jobs must be quoted and scheduled.     Email us

                with your questions and specifications.



SPARE is a modest short-term artist residency program and resource for Risograph printing and bookmaking. As a residency program we give residents a small bedroom plus access to our Risograph GR3750 stencil printer and other rudimentary bookmaking tools. We are also available for consultation, production jobs, and other requests on a select basis.         Contact us at info(at)spareresidency(dot)com

You do not need to have print or book experience to apply for residency

    or print with us. We have a stencil printer                 and would like to know what you                                         would do         with it.



We keep a variety of simple paper on hand         for resident's use and may add to or pick up paper at resident's request but please arrange for getting your own paper if you require anything specific. We encourage residents to come with ideas but understand that a reasonable number of tests of paper and inks will likely be necessary as the Risograph has its own                 unique results that are difficult to know prior. Because the residency period is short           and we cannot make all types of paper available in-house, paper must be considered     (and maybe ordered) in advance.             Accepted residents will be given more information for ordering or finding paper     locally.


Printed material completed by residents will generally be issued as an edition and sold through SPARE. Proceeds from those sales will go to SPARE to help cover residency program costs. We typically give artists 20% of the edition plus an artist proof for their own use.         We are open to other arrangements but any alternative plans MUST be agreed upon before your arrival. The number of editions         will be project specific. We facilitate work toward a single         project so please recognize that extra prints or other printed projects, while welcome, may be charged to the resident at production costs. SPARE will keep complete books in our library and for purchase online. As a service to residents         we also seek, with permission, representation                 of them and their work at book & art fairs, bookstore placement, and book reviews.

Please contact us by email for more specifics if you are interested in having             us print your project     outside the residency program.

A P P L     Y

To apply please consider and submit the following for our consideration:


Please send a pdf portfolio and/or link to your website so that we can see your work.


An artist statement     or something similar     that describes your general work     and conceptual pursuits     would be helpful. This does not need to be written specifically             for your work at SPARE.


Describe your intents and the project you will be working on while staying with us. We do not need an elaborate proposal but do need a general understanding of what you want to do. We encourage informal writing         and are most interested in content, concept, and book-form related ideas. We are open to artists looking to print or make work different from what is in their portfolio and this will in no way hinder your acceptance if you can lay out your ideas clearly. In fact, we are especially interested to work with artists without print or book experience or others who can challenge those conventions. We have experience with many aspects of design, printing, binding, distribution, promotion, and sales and are willing to discuss them with you but will only respond directly in these ways at your request. Again, this is a modest program focused on content and bookmaking with less (if any) interest in broad appeal or profits. These details don't need to be finalized in your application but please consider artist/printer relationship                 as this is a residency and you can work collaboratively (to any degree you choose) or     mostly independently. We are interested in integrated and unique approaches to all aspects of printing and publishing and strive to actively rethink these conventions directly through each SPARE printing endeavor. If you aren't familiar with these facets of publishing don't worry- we've started this program in part to work with people who are making great work but aren't able or haven't yet presented it in this way. The residency can be a great reason to learn and respond to these broader publishing issues and we are eager for those proposals and conversations (including during the selection process- we are accessible by email).         We do not expect you to think of everything but the more we know of your work and intents the better we can review your application     and assist with your project.


UPDATE: No new openings until fall 2014. We will make these decisions in the summer. Let us know what dates you are available. The length of stay is generally two to three weeks and we have room for only one resident at a time.


There is no application fee but if selected we will ask for $200 which secures your spot and covers a fraction of the things we provide.


We review applications four times a year on the 15th of March, June, September, and December

and try to make selections shortly after         those dates. We hope to make this opportunity                                 available to a wide range of artists so please don't hesitate to contact us with any     thoughts, questions, or concerns you have. We're also open to discussing                         your work or proposal before making a     decision regarding your residency.



SPARE residents are given a private room in our apartment and have access to the print room which contains the Risograph and other book related materials.

Residents share the apartment with Kyle and Shannon, our 2 year old Theo, and our little dog Roxanne. We provide all food and will cook meals most evenings for residents. We also give access to our kitchen for residents who wish to cook their own food. Dishes, cooking equipment,     and spices are provided. Clean bedding, pillows, and towels are also                 provided. You may do laundry in         the apartment. Other items you may enjoy include but are not limited to a tv, dvd player, vhs player, record player, digital and     analog cameras,     running water, a bicycle, hand soap, chairs, sunlight (weather permitting), golf clubs, our zine library, heat, radio, fans, and a shower.






The resident bedroom has white walls and is about 90 square feet. It has a south-facing window a small desk and some plants. You'll get a wardrobe with a hanging rod and hangers and a couple of shelves. The bed is lofted so you'll have to climb a ladder         to get in each night. There is wireless                                 internet access throughout the apartment.


In addition to the Risograph this room contains a small table, a bunch of shelves for storing and organizing prints, a window, a few plants, a long-arm stapler, hole punches, sewing machine, paper awl, bone folder, a few other typical tools useful in book-making that I can't remember, wireless internet, a cheap desktop inkjet printer, a desktop scanner, a select variety of paper, a manual typewriter, and a                                                                                 mess of other supplies from tape and pencils to wood and power saws. The room is clad in cheap wood paneling on top of which are posters posters and prints from other artists.     There is a small amount                     of work space here and in the bedroom, but please do not count on doing work that requires large amounts of space.


                    SPARE is located     in the Pilsen neighborhood                                     of Chicago with quick access to downtown, art venues, tacos,                     a large park, and more. If selected, you will be given more information regarding the neighborhood prior to         arrival your in Chicago.



I spent a month with a (vase), I spent two weeks with a (book)
by Lu Zhang

Orange like the one you eat (only matte)
by Maarten Boekweit

by Gabriele Sedda

Dead Ringer
by Kit Leffler

by Working-Knowledge & SPARE

by Linus Bill , David Bodhi Boylan, Steffen Bunte , Dante Carlos , Jay Cover, Zak Jensen, Thad Kellstadt, and Tim McMullen

B R A Z I L : Objects 1 - 20
by Nathaniel Surrey

Teleporter #2
edited by Sam Kreese and Kyle Schlie with a text contribution from The Trapezoid Sleeps

The Commodity
by Caitlin Warner

by Megan Hopkins

A Family Home
by Megan Hopkins

by Kyle Schlie