The proliferation of digital technologies has initiated a need for radical changes to publishing business models, while simultaneously laying the foundation for a renaissance of the print book akin to that which occurred in the 1960s and 70s. This “second wave of self-publishing” has come about as a widespread surge, particularly in the realm of contemporary art and graphic design, but also in literary and DIY circles. As was the case in the “first wave,” this expansion has resulted in the development of brick-and-mortar spaces that house and nurture the activities of this niche, particularly the production of publications, exhibitions and additional programming (such as lectures and workshops). These hubs act as nodes on a decentralized network of local and global publishing activity that is increasingly connected via the internet. The case study of Project Space — a publisher, bookshop, project space, and studio in the Chinatown neighbourhood of Vancouver, British Columbia (operated by OCW Arts & Publishing Foundation in collaboration with Project Space Studio) — explores the development of such a space, with particular interest in the past and present context that have produced the need the space seeks to fulfill.
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