Fieldnotes: 30 Years of KPI

Fieldnotes is an exhibit of samplings from Kore’s in-house archive—an amuse-bouche made from 30 years of ephemera, printed matter, artifacts, process notes, photos, sound, video materials, and more. The exhibit runs from Oct 3, 2023 to March 2, 2024 at the University of Arizona Poetry Center.

Join us for the opening reception and celebration at the UA Poetry Center on Tuesday, Oct 10, 2023, 6-8pm MST. Snacks, drinks and connecting. Remarks by Lisa Bowden and guests start at 6:30pm.

1508 E Helen St, Tucson, AZ 85721-0150

As one of the longest running feminist presses in the country dedicated to publishing contemporary literature by women and trans artists with intersectional awareness, KPI is the only one historically committed to youth education and wide-scale participatory art activism projects.

Kore began in 1993 as a small studio publisher in the Steinfeld warehouse downtown Tucson making limited edition books and broadsides by hand on a Vandercook letterpress. The glorious attention to craft was an intentional act of elevating the voices of the women writers with beauty. Eventually the Press evolved to reach a wider audience with greater impact by entering trade publishing, social practice arts, and large community collaborations.

Yale University’s Beineke Library and Rare Book Room is the institutional home of Kore’s expansive archive. Fieldnotes shares some of our very first letterpress efforts as well as groundbreaking collections—by women veterans, and, by black women writing radically. From live storytelling by truth-telling moms to trade books, provocative performance work, and city-wide innovative engagements; from a cross-sector Think Tank tasked with increasing safety for LGBTQ+ youth in Arizona, a Social Justice Youth Summit, to literary approaches to culturally responsive pedagogy and gender inclusive training for educators; to a collectivist online series of literary experiments developed during the pandemic as a protest in place in support of the BLM movement.

Of course it is impossible to share 30 years of literary publishing, activist and social practice art works in one lovely and small exhibit. Fieldnotes represents a scratching of the surface, presenting the beginning of a longer tending process (cataloging, caring for, and annotating). This is part of the legacy project in the coming year.

October 2023 is Kore’s 30th anniversary month. We hope you stop by the UA Poetry Center sometime over the next 6 months to enjoy our offering.