Dulce María Luna
Dulce María Luna Torres was born in Mexico City in 1964. She first discovered bookbinding as a child in her father's workshop, where she acquired the dexterity and skills required for bookbinding. Dulce received a degree in Hispanic Language and Literature at the National Autonomous University of Mexico, becoming a professor of literature and writing. She also worked as an editor in the Mexican publishing house Fondo de Cultura Económica.
In 1990 she opened her workshop, La Antigua Binding. Dulce has completed various projects for writers, publishers, and companies; she has developed and taught bookbinding workshops, and participated in exhibitions and contests. She designed and produced cases for the Mexican Pre-Hispanic Codex, edited by the Fondo de Cultura Economica, and produced writing materials for the catalogs of Kate's Paperie and Rizzoli, in New York City.
Dulce has taken specialized bookbinding courses in Spain with various notable teachers. She participated in the 1st International Exhibition of Artistic Bindings of the Llar del Llibre workshop, in Alicante, studying with Javier Abellán, who contributed significantly to her training as an artistic bookbinder. She competed in the World Biennial of Art Bookbinding in Paris, from 2005 to 2022. She won the Villa de Saint Rèmy lès Chevreuse prize in 2007. She received a fellowship from the National Fund for Culture and the Arts, supporting her efforts to popularize the arts of bookbinding, conservation, and care. In 2010 she received funding to attend an artistic binding program in Osaka, Japan.
In 2003, Dulce presented her work in an exhibition titled, "Pliegues de la Memoria" (Folds of Memory) and has exhibited her work around the world. She has taught workshops to audiences of all ages, but especially to children, evangelizing the book. She has reached more than 35,000 participants in Mexico, Guatemala, Colombia, Brazil, Spain, France and the United States. More recently the exhibition, expanded to include poetry and fiber arts, appeared at the Library of Mexico. Retitled "Poetic Journey," it is a celebration of Dulce’s 50-year journey with the book. Now the exhibition has crossed the border to be hosted by the American Bookbinders Museum from June to August, 2023, in San Francisco, California.
The Bindings of Dulce María Luna ⬤ 50 years
Since the age of five, Dulce Maria Luna has been binding books in the workshop of her father, a traditional artisan from Mexico City. Surrounded by the processes and materials of the trade–paper, glue, leather, and thread–she found that binding was not just a craft but a means of expression.
Later, Dulce Maria studied language and literature, which fueled her interest in poetry. These two arts, which converge around the book, developed her desire to reflect the literary contents of books in the physical manifestation of each volume. This exhibition is the result of this passion, which is now in its fiftieth year, and displays representative steps in that journey.
In addition to her artistic work, Dulce María is also an activist, offering bookbinding courses and workshops (for children, young people and adults), and combining that work with poetry, weaving and performance, to spread this art to different parts of Mexico—as well as Guatemala, Colombia, Brazil, Spain, France and the United States. She has also been an annual exhibitor at the World Biennial of Art Bookbinding held in Paris.
A new step in her path is shared with us at the American Bookbinders Museum in San Francisco. This very exciting trajectory combines a confluence of cultures within bookbinding. Here we find diverse books of Mexican, French and German literature, converted into poetic pieces that are the result of her ongoing approach to Design Bindings. Completing this exhibition are poems, textiles, and pictures embroidered with thread; all are the product of her exploration and life’s adventure.