Previous Programmes

This page contains the various and varied projects that have occured since the Printer in Residence programme began in 2003. Past editions still available can be purchased via the Library Online Shop.


The 2014 Printer in Residence programme will feature Peter Vangioni, owner operator of Kowhai Press, Christchurch, and curator at the Christchurch Art Gallery, in collaboration with Michael Morley, an artist based at Port Chalmers.


The 2013 Printer in Residence programme involved three printers: Dr John Holmes (Frayed Frisket Press); Rob Lamb (Mirrorcity LetterPress) and Tara McLeod (Pear Tree Press). The project was to print 6 (later expanded to 8) posters of quotations by New Zealand writers/poets: Jenny Bornholdt, Riemke Ensing, Charlotte Grimshaw, Bernadette Hall, Fiona Kidman, Elizabeth Knox, Cilla McQueen, and Emma Neale. The quotations were used as a springboard for the printers' creativity and typographic experimentation.

Only 100 copies were printed, and the University bindery supplied the four-flap cover. Copies are still available at NZ$200.00 (incl gst).


The Printer in Residence for 2012 was Dr John Holmes, a hand-craft printer based in Dunedin, who runs his own Frayed Frisket Press and who has, under this imprint, hand-printed well over 50 books. On two other occasions (see above 2004; 2007) he has been Printer in Residence at the Otakou Press.

John printed a limited edition of 100 copies of poetry called Distractions by Kevin Cunningham (1945-2002), who studied English at Otago University and at Liverpool University. In the 1970s, Cunningham started and ran the Amphedesma Press (in partnership with Bill Manhire), which published editions of New Zealand poetry. Cunningham returned to New Zealand in 1973, and in 1978 he became the McNab Librarian at Dunedin Public Library. Two of his publications included Conversations in a Train (1977) and The New Zealand Novel (1980).

Friend and colleague Bill Manhire selected and wrote an introduction to the edition. This 'Memorial' publication was suggested by Emeritus Professor Charlotte Paul, School of Preventative Medicine, who was partner to Cunningham.

Loosely tipped in the volume, bound by the University bindery, was an image of Cunningham by Joanna Paul, and poems on Cunningham by Manhire and Alan Roddick. Copies are still available at NZ$90.00 (incl gst).


The Printer in Residence for 2011 was John Denny, a hand-craft printer based in Auckland, who runs his own Puriri Press and who has, under this imprint, hand-printed well over 100 books. He stayed in Dunedin for five weeks and produced Skew-Whiff, a number of poems by local poet Peter Olds (Burns Fellow, 1978).

To enhance the text, eight images were executed by Kathryn Madill, a Dunedin artist-printmaker.

100 copies only of Skew-Whiff were printed. Notable images include the centre-fold of graffiti spotted on buildings around Dunedin, and the beatle boots image accompanying the fluorescent MODERN with the first line: 'It used to be the Hob Nob Coffee Bar…' Copies are still available at NZ$250.00 (incl gst).


The Printer in Residence for 2010 was Caren Florance, a hand-craft printer based in Canberra, who runs her own Ampersand Duck press. She worked in the Otakou Press room from 2 August to 10 September 2010 and produced 100 copies of PRIME, a multi-coloured edition of 7 poems by Australian and New Zealand poets: Stephen Edgar, Robert Adamson, Sarah Holland-Batt, Les Murray, Sue Wootton, Michael Harlow, and Vincent O'Sullivan.

Caren was our first hi-tech computer literate Printer in Residence. As a result of her blogging, twittering, and podcasts, the project and processes as each poster poem was produced extended well beyond that normally achieved. There were postings on her blog and website, and a video clip posted on Youtube. In addition, she featured in the Otago Daily Times 19 August 2010, Otago Bulletin (3 September 2010), Channel 9's Dunedin Diary, and an interview with Lynn Freeman on Arts on Sunday, National Radio.

Watch the YouTube clip

Watch the Channel 9 Dunedin Diary interview.

Listen to the interview with Lynn Freeman on Arts on Sunday, National Radio


The Printer in Residence for 2009 was Tara McLeod, a hand-craft printer based in Auckland who owns his own The Pear Tree Press. Tara worked in the Otakou Press room for four to five weeks, from 1 September to 3 October 2009.

Because 2009 was the 100th anniversary of Charles Brasch’s birth, it was fitting that a limited edition work was produced to celebrate this occasion, and one of Dunedin’s benefactors. In the time McLeod was here, he hand-printed a limited edition illustrated edition of 8 to 10 poems by Auckland poet Riemke Ensing on poet, patron and literary editor Charles Brasch. The title was O Lucky Man.

Alan Roddick, Brasch’s literary executor, supplied an introduction to the text, and Inge Doesburg, a local print-maker, used the Press Room’s etching press and created three interpretative images for the text. 100 copies were printed and 90 were for sale. The book was bound by the University Bindery. Designed and printed by McLeod, he used 14 pt Garamond type on a 145 gsm Zerkall cream paper.


Alan Loney, master-printer and poet, was the Printer in Residence for 2008. While resident here for five weeks, Loney hand-set and printed a limited edition of unpublished poems by local poet Ruth Dallas (1919-2008).

Before she died, Dallas gave the Otakou Press permission to print a selection of her published poems. Since then, a number of unpublished haiku written by her have been discovered and the text printed by Loney contained most of these.


Dr John Holmes, a hand-craft printer (Frayed Friskett Press) based in Dunedin, was the 2007 Printer in Residence. Hone Tuwhare's Come Rain Hail was the work selected for print.

Seven illustrators agreed to contribute to the Programme, and each one selected a poem to illustrate. The artists included: Olav Nielsen, Inge Doesburg, Marilyn Webb, Simon Kaan, Kathryn Madill, Mary McFarlane, and Jenna Packer.


Tara McLeod returned to print a limited edition of Lewis Carroll’s The Hunting of the Snark. This edition – of 101 copies only – was illustrated by David Elliot.


Brendan O’Brien, a Wellington-based hand printer, printed a limited edition (100 copies) publication of access to lilac, verse by the artist Joanna Paul, and a first time limited edition printing of Ralph Hotere and Bill Manhire’s PINE sequence. 


Brian Turner's Faces in the Water was set and printed by Dr John Holmes with illustrations by artist John Mitchell. Images were printed by Inge Doesburg, a local print maker. Sixty-five copies were printed and sold at $250.00 each.


Two works were produced by Tara MacLeod (first Printer in Residence); Charles Brasch’s ‘…a great warm feather-bed’; in an edition of fifty copies only, and A Haggis of Verse, a volume of seven poems written by poets with an association with Dunedin. Poets were Charles Brasch, Ruth Dallas, Alan Roddick, Brian Turner, Emma Neale, Alison Wong, and David Eggleton.