"I make books because I can't not make them." —R. Maret, Berkeley, CA 2013
Russell Maret began studying letterpress printing in 1989 in San Francisco. Initially studying with Peter Koch, he went on to be resident printer at the Press in Tuscany Alley, and to continue his studies at Firefly Press in Somerville, Massachusetts where he worked as a Monotype and Linotype compositor, as well as a pressman. He returned to New York in 1993 and began printing and bookbinding at the Center for Book Arts where he was Artist-in-Residence in 1996. In 1999 he set up his own studio and has been moving it around ever since.
At some point in the mid to late '90s, Russell became disillusioned with the printed, typographic book as he had been approaching it and proceeded to spend nine or ten years devoted to the study of geometric and pre-typographic alphabetic form. These studies, combined with his drawings of the intervening years, have recently lead him back to the printed book.
Russell has taught and lectured on letterpress printing, bookbinding, the history of letterforms, and the history of the book at the Center for Book Arts, New York; the Center for Contemporary Printmaking, Norwalk, Connecticut; the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, New York; La Casa del Libro, San Juan; and La Escuela de Artes Plasticas de Puerto Rico, San Juan. His books and drawings have been exhibited all over the world, and are in public and private collections in North America, Europe, and Africa.