Monday, August 16, 2021


It’s been a long time coming, but here is the promised update on Cat’s Cradle, the artist book featured in our last post. It has been included in BOOKISH, an online exhibition of 94 artist books celebrating 55 years of the Print Council of Australia

Click on individual images for an enlarged view.

Originally, BOOKISH was also intended to be part of the art fair, Sydney Contemporary. However due to extensive rescheduling following the current COVID-19 outbreak, this will no longer be possible. The Print Council of Australia is currently seeking an alternative Melbourne venue in October 2021. I will keep you updated.

Meanwhile, you can visit the online exhibition of BOOKISH HERE.

Tuesday, June 29, 2021

An Important Message for Followers of MOTH WOMAN PRESS

From July 1, for reasons best known to themselves, Google will remove the ‘Follow by Email’ option on all blogs, so followers of this blog will no longer receive email notifications of my new posts. 

At present, I’m not clear about whether Google intends to substitute an alternative. I can’t see any way around this, except to provide links to future posts via my Instagram and Facebook accounts. These can also be accessed under YOU CAN ALSO FIND ME HERE in the right hand column of this blog.

I’d like to take this opportunity to extend my heartfelt gratitude and thanks to the loyal followers of this blog. Your support means a great deal. I do hope you will still drop by from time to time. 

Pictured top: my one-of-a-kind artist book, Cat’s Cradle. An update on the book will follow shortly. 

Sunday, June 13, 2021

GATHER with Minerva’s Books & Ideas


In recent years I’ve become an inveterate devourer of podcasts, and one of my favourites is a relatively new kid on the block, GATHER with Minerva’s Books & Ideas. The series was conceived and created on traditional Wadawurrung land here in Ballarat by its presenter, Amy Tsilemanis (

Amy describes GATHER as: “Audio adventures exploring the lives of books, and the ideas they ignite and illuminate. Each episode is themed and unfurls from a book or books, and features the work of artists, writers, musicians and thinkers”. 

Fairy Tales Continued, the most recent episode, includes my fairy tale, The Moth and the Butterflies. (The link is here: The story is superbly read by Ballarat-based artist and musician, Ellen Sorensen ( Over the years, I’ve been gratified and delighted by other aural presentations of my stories, including a wonderful reading by Amy herself (see her Instagram post of August 20, 2020) and am slowly coming to the realisation that, like fairy tales of old, they are best savoured when read out loud.  

The Moth and the Butterflies is part of my illustrated anthology, There was once…The collected fairy tales, currently available at that “curious extraordinarium of papery delights”, Playing in the Attic (, which you’ll find nestled in the historic Ballaarat Mechanics’ Institute building in Sturt Street, Ballarat. 

A link to all episodes of GATHER is here:

The website for Miverva’s Books is here:

The Minerva Books Facebook and Instagram pages are here: and here:

Friday, February 26, 2021

Feature article in P.T. Peregrin’s Morse Code for Beginners

Late last year I was invited by Trudy McLauchlan, proprietor of the diminutive, delightful store Playing in the Attic in Sturt Street, Ballarat, to contribute to the summer edition of the zine P. T. Peregrin’s Morse Code for Beginners, which Trudy co-edits with Prudence McBeth. I was already a huge fan of the zine, a quarterly publication that was first launched in 2020, so was honoured to accept. 

The informal Q&A hello, who are you? is a regular feature of the zine. Interviewees are presented with a set list of questions, several of them deceptively playful. The questions were not only fun to answer, but potentially reveal far more facets of the subject than those that form the basis for many scholarly articles - not to mention the tediously dry, standardised information found in the average artist’s biography.

The summer edition of  P. T. Peregrin’s Morse Code for Beginners was recently published. It retails for $15.00 plus postage and is available exclusively from Playing in the Attic. Incidentally, the shop is also a stockist of selected Moth Woman Press publications. If distance is an issue, you can visit Playing in the Attic on Facebook HERE and on Instagram HERE.

Pictured top are the front cover of the zine (with artwork by Trudy McLauchlan), followed by the illustrated pages of my responses to hello, who are you? Click on the image for a considerably enlarged view. 

Full text of the Q&A is directly below.

hello, who are you?

Deborah Klein 

Tell us a bit about yourself

I grew up in St. Kilda, not far from the beach and Luna Park. My childhood memories are bittersweet, but there’s no denying that my home town had an enduring influence on my later work. Travel was always in my blood, however, and in 1973 I flew to London, where I lived for the remainder of the decade. London was an ideal base for further travel, to Europe and other parts of the UK. It was a tremendously formative period. I was able to view artworks I had only ever seen in books and discovered artists whose works weren’t widely known in Australia, at least, not then. Film has also had a significant influence on my work - I’ve been a cineaste since my early teens - and the British Film Institute was one of my favourite haunts.

At that stage of my life, I was largely self-taught as an artist. After my return to Australia I enrolled in art school at Chisholm Institute (now Monash University). Initially I majored in painting, but switched to a printmaking major. Subsequently I gained a couple of higher degrees and for several years, starting in 2003, was a sessional lecturer in the drawing and printmaking departments at RMIT

I’ve been exhibiting since 1987. Nowadays I’m a full-time artist, working between painting, drawing, printmaking and book art.

For 20 years, my partner and I lived in inner city Melbourne. In 2011 we began dividing our time between Melbourne and Ballarat before moving permanently to the latter at the end of last year. It’s the best move we ever made.

What one piece of advice would you give to your younger self?

I’d advise myself to have greater self-confidence and repeat often.

Who or what inspires you?

My partner, Shane Jones, who is also a painter. We have similar taste in film, music, theatre and the visual arts, all of which enrich our lives. I’ve learned a great deal from him, both as an artist and individual. His work is technically astonishing, he’s patient, kind, generous, dedicated, disciplined, enthusiastic, endlessly curious and not afraid to follow his own path.

What puts you in the mood to create?

A subject that engages me, something that often originates from travel. Women’s absence from history is the thread connecting much of my work and intricately coiffed human hair is its dominant motif. In British museums I first discovered Elizabethan and Jacobean portraits, including portrait miniatures, and the finely wrought hair work found in sentimental and mourning jewellery that set my work on its current path.

Which six people would you invite to a dinner party?

I’m blessed to have some wonderful friends and couldn’t possibly narrow the guest list down to six. Instead, I’ll take the fantasy route, although I could still have added twice the number. Orson Welles, Dorothy Parker, Gloria Steinem, Elaine Stritch, Mary Shelley and Tennessee Williams should ensure some lively conversations.

Who would you dress as to attend a costume ball?

The Bride of Frankenstein, as portrayed in the 1935 film by the great Elsa Lanchester.

When did you know you were a creative little beast?

I can’t remember the exact year. I was still in primary school, possibly even kindergarten!

What is your current favourite medium to create with?

There are two - acrylic on linen and pigmented drawing inks on Khadi, a handmade rag paper from India.

What does your artistic future hold?

More work - it’s what keeps me going. Beyond that, I can only speak for the immediate future. I’m fortunate that most of last year’s projects, including three exhibitions and a residency, have been rescheduled for 2021.

What is your favourite possession?

It would be impossible to single just one of them out. Instead, I nominate an object that is technically none of those things - the digital projector my partner and I purchased at the start of the first lockdown. Our Art Deco house came with a cinema room on the first floor. We have a huge collection of films and throughout the COVID-19 lockdowns our projector opened a magic portal through which we could travel to other worlds.

What are you reading at the moment?

The Door and Other Uncanny Tales by Dmetri Kakmi. Dmetri is a marvellous writer, as well as being a close friend. The compelling novella-length title story was inspired by Shane’s full-scale painting of a door that now hangs next to the screen in our home cinema. It’s so convincing that Dmetri once tried to open it. The Door is a ghost story with an autobiographical core, but Dmetri has also drawn from elements of my life and Shane’s so it holds great personal significance for us both.

From P.T. Peregrin’s Morse Code for Beginners (Quarterly zine, summer edition) 

Edited by Trudy McLauchlan and Prudence McBeth, a Teepee Publication, 2021

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

New Year wishes and a new bookplate

The last Moth Woman Press project for 2020 continues our current focus on bookplates.

Intended for the Australian Bookplate Design Award 2020, it was a pleasure to work on from start to finish. Our cat Alice, a delightful companion during this year’s lockdowns, was my model for the feline figure. She’s pictured below closely examining the newly carved lino block. After printing, the block was hand-coloured with watercolour (see final photo). Measurements are 15 x 12.5 cm (image) on A4 sized paper.

For more about this bookplate, including additional progress views, visit my art blog HERE.

Due to ongoing concerns about COVID-19, the Award has been postponed until 2021, although I’ve posted my entry ahead of time. 

Revised dates for the Australian Bookplate Design Award are still TBA. Meanwhile, warmest wishes to you all for a bright, happy, healthy and creative New Year. 

Monday, October 19, 2020

Oscar Wilde bookplate

Whilst my current bookplate designs are under development, here is an example of one I made several years ago. Based on a poem by Oscar Wilde and reproduced from one of my linocuts, the bookplate comes in packets of 20. 

From this week, a limited number of Oscar Wilde bookplates will available through Playing in the Attic, 119a Sturt Street, Ballarat, Vic 3350. Phone: 0428 580 309. The shop also stocks a selection of Moth Woman Press books and zines and is open from Wednesday - Saturday.

The Facebook page of Playing in the Attic, which includes updates on opening hours during COVID-19, is HERE.

Sunday, September 13, 2020

More bookplates

Lately I’ve been working on a linocut bookplate (not pictured) that I plan to enter into the upcoming Australian Bookplate Design Award. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for several years, but each time the biennial award comes around it seems to coincide with a particularly busy period and I’ve never quite been able to find the time. With the October deadline fast approaching, it’s not surprising that bookplates have been very much on my mind (see also last post). 

A recent post on my Art Blog, prompted by Mark Cousin’s remarkable 14-hour documentary, Women Make Film that was recently screened at the 2020 Melbourne International Film Festival, focuses on a suite of linocuts I made back in the 1990s that draw their inspiration from Film Noir and the genre known as the woman’s film.

As I developed my linocut, it seemed to me that the Film Noir/woman’s film images could also be reimagined as bookplates and I set about making a series of experiments on my iPad. All up, there are nine of them. They are still works in progress and haven’t yet been proofed. A small selection are reproduced here and the remaining designs will feature in a future post.

Friday, August 14, 2020

Bookplates in progress

While we’re on the subject of bookplates (see my last post) here are the first of several I’m currently developing. These examples incorporate three small paintings I made in the early stages of lockdown.

I’ve always had a fascination for bookplates, and am about to begin one using the more traditional medium of linocut.

These digitally produced bookplates are essentially limbering-up exercises. They are still in the experimental stages, but I’m finding them quite soothing to work on, a welcome contrast to far more laborious, time-consuming projects, including the painting I’m currently working on, a triptych that’s likely to take a considerable time to resolve.

Friday, August 7, 2020

A checklist for times of COVID


Four be the things I am wiser to know:
Idleness, sorrow, a friend, and a foe.
Four be the things I’d been better without:
Love, curiosity, freckles, and doubt.
Three be the things I shall never attain:
Envy, content, and sufficient champagne.
Three be the things I shall have till I die:
Laughter and hope and a sock in the eye.

- Dorothy Parker

Pictured top: a bookplate made in 1987. Collections: State Library of Victoria, private collections. 

In terms of a physical inventory, the Art Deco clock (presented to my late grandfather, Lee Rogers, by the Port Augusta Swimming Club) and vase (purchased at Portobello Road Market, London in the 1970s) sit on the mantelpiece in the dining room of the Art Deco house we moved into late last year. The cocktail glasses, a gift from the old friend this bookplate was originally made for, are stored in an adjoining glass cabinet.  

Friday, May 1, 2020

Cat’s Cradle - Finalist in 2020 Libris Awards

Above and below: Cat’s Cradle, 2019, acrylic on wood and pigmented
drawing ink on paper, 16.5 x 15.5 x 1.5 cm (closed)
In recent news, our artist book, Cat’s Cradle, has been shortlisted for the 2020 Libris Awards: The Australian Artists Book Prize at Artspace Mackay.

Judges for the 2020 Awards are Robert Heather, Director of Advancement, Communications and Events at University of New England and Des Cowley, Principal Librarian, History of the Book and Arts at State Library of Victoria. The exhibition catalogue, including a full list of of finalists, is here:

Due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, exhibition dates and the announcement of award winners have yet to be confirmed. Currently Artspace Mackay anticipates announcing the the prize winning entries and confirmation of exhibition dates by late June 2020. Please visit the Artspace Mackay website for updates:

Monday, February 24, 2020

New zines at Playing in the Attic

We’re delighted to announce that the four MWP zines recently launched at the 2020 Sticky Institute Festival of the Photocopier Zine Fair (pictured top) are now available at Playing in the Attic in Ballarat. The shop has also stocked up on new copies of two old favourites, our books There was once...The collected fairy tales and Fallen Women.

Playing in the Attic
119a Sturt Street
Ballarat (VIC) 3350

Phone: 0428 580 309
Hours: Wednesday - Saturday 10 am - 4 pm

Monday, February 10, 2020

FOTP 2020 highlights

Pictured above and below are a handful of highlights from yesterday’s fabulous 2020 Sticky Institute Festival of the Photocopier Zine Fair. (Click on images for a clearer view). 

For the first time in its illustrious history, the Festival of the Photocopier was held at the historic Meat Market in North Melbourne. I couldn’t have wished for finer zine stall neighbours than Andrew Pilkington, with whom I shared a table, and Gracia Haby and Louise Jennison, who shared the table to our right. Thank you to Sticky and the Meat Market for having us, to Shane Jones for your inestimable assistance and to all who stopped by the Moth Woman Press stand to say hello and help us raise funds for Wildlife Victoria's Victorian Bushfire Appeal. I had a ball and can’t wait to do it again next year.

Sunday, February 9, 2020

Now Voyager

Pictured above: Now Voyager, a mini-zine made especially for the 2020 STICKY INSTITUTE FESTIVAL OF THE PHOTOCOPIER ZINE FAIR at the Meat Market, 3 Blackwood Street, North Melbourne, 3051. 

The zine takes its title from The Untold Want, a poem by Walt Whitman: 

‘The untold want by life and land ne'er granted
Now voyager sail thou forth to seek and find.’

I’ll be at FOTP 2020 today, Sunday 9 February, from 12 – 5 pm. The proceeds of all our sales will be donated to Wildlife Victoria’s Victorian Bushfire Appeal:

Saturday, February 8, 2020

Life at the Top of the Art World - a survival guide by Alice

So you’ve reached the top of the Art World. Well, it sure doesn’t end there. In eight not-easy steps, Alice demonstrates how to sidestep the painful slide down that most slippery of slopes - and how to avoid getting splinters if you do. An essential instruction manual, Life at the Top of the Art World - a survival guide by Alice, (2020), is presented from the singular perspective of one who was catapulted into mega-stardom while still a kitten. Click on images to enlarge.

Initially Alice assumed a supervisory role in the production of her latest mini-zine, but before long, her contribution became more paws-on. 

Life at the Top of the Art World will be launched at the 2020 STICKY INSTITUTE FESTIVAL OF THE PHOTOCOPIER ZINE FAIR, Meat Market, 3 Blackwood Street, North Melbourne, 3051, on Sunday 9 February, 12 – 5 pm. 

This and all Moth Woman Press limited-edition mini-zines will offered at the special FOTP 2020 price of $4.00, with all proceeds donated to a cause that’s close to Alice’s heart:  Wildlife Victoria’s Victorian Bushfire Appeal: 

Friday, February 7, 2020

Alice at FOTP 2020

Alice has starred in no less than three Moth Woman Press mini-zines, including the eponymous Alice, (2019), a suite of eight pastoral scenes set to a poem, also titled Alice, by Christina Rossetti. The poem was penned way back in the nineteenth century, but the prophetic Rossetti clearly had our Alice in mind. 

Shameless self-promoter Alice wants it known that all three Alice-themed zines will be featured in the upcoming 2020 STICKY INSTITUTE FESTIVAL OF THE PHOTOCOPIER ZINE FAIR at the Meat Market, 3 Blackwood Street, North Melbourne, 3051, Sunday 9 February, 12 – 5 pm. 

Moth Woman Press limited-edition mini-zines will be offered at the special FOTP 2020 price of $4.00, with all proceeds donated to Wildlife Victoria’s Victorian Bushfire Appeal:

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Ghost Gums

Currently on the work table: Ghost Gums, a Moth Woman Press mini-zine in the process of creation for the 2020 STICKY INSTITUTE FESTIVAL OF THE PHOTOCOPIER ZINE FAIR, Meat Market, 3 Blackwood Street, North Melbourne, 3051. You’ll find me and my zines there on Sunday 9 February from 12 – 5 pm. 

As mentioned in our recent posts, all proceeds from Moth Woman Press sales at FOTP 2020 will be donated to Wildlife Victoria’s Victorian Bushfire Appeal.

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Backstories zine

Pictured above: the cover art for Backstories, another mini-zine-in-the making for the upcoming Sticky Institute 2020 Festival of the Photocopier Zine Fair at the Meat Market, 3 Blackwood Street, North Melbourne, 3051

We'll be donating all proceeds of Moth Woman Press sales at FOTP 2020 to Wildlife Victoria’s Victorian Bushfire Appeal.

Pictured below: the FOTP 2020 poster, designed by Tim Sta-Ana.

I'll be there on Sunday 9th February from 12–5pm and hope you’ll drop by and say hello. 

For further information, scroll down to our previous post.

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Festival of the Photocopier 2020

Now Voyager, 2020 mini-zine (cover art)

Moth Woman Press has hit the ground running in 2020. On Sunday 9 February we are participating in the legendary Sticky Institute Festival of the Photocopier Zine Fair, which this year will be held at Melbourne Meat Market. We are making four new zines especially for the event, including Now Voyager, the front cover of which is previewed above. A limited number of back-issues of Moth Woman Press publications will also be available. 

In the light of the ongoing bushfire crisis, all proceeds from MWP zine sales will be donated to Wildlife Victoria’s Victorian Bushfire Appeal.

Festival of the Photocopier 2020 is a two-day event. Moth Woman Press will be there on the second day, Sunday 9 February from 12 – 5 pm and we hope you will too.

Meat Market 
T (03) 9329 9966
3 Blackwood Street, North Melbourne, 3051.
For the best public transport options, go HEREPlease note that the surrounding area has limited permit, metered and timed on-street parking.

Wednesday, December 25, 2019

Season's Greetings for 2019

 A snapshot of my old studio. (Photo credit: Shane Jones).

2019 has been an uncharacteristically slow year at Moth Woman Press, due to a series of back-to-back house moves. Over the past seven months, my partner, Shane Jones, and I sold our respective homes in Melbourne and Ballarat and have bought a house together in Ballarat East. Our new home is still a work in progress, but we're gradually getting there.

I look forward to sharing further news from the new centre of operations of Moth Woman Press, Ballarat, in the coming weeks.

Until then, Merry Chistmoth, everyone.

Thursday, October 3, 2019

SELF-MADE at Latrobe Regional Gallery

The Moth Woman Vigilantes, 2011, zine, edition of 80. Collection:
State Library of Victoria. Photo credit: Paul Compton.

Pictured above: our limited edition zine, The Moth Woman Vigilantes, spotted by Paul Compton at Latrobe Regional Gallery in SELF-MADE: ZINES AND ARTIST BOOKS, a touring exhibition from the State Library of Victoria.

The exhibition is ‘... presented by State Library Victoria in partnership with Sticky Institute, and supported by the Victorian Government through Creative Victoria and the Visions regional touring program, an Australian Government program aiming to improve access to cultural material for all Australians’. 
- From the Latrobe Regional Gallery website.

SELF MADE opened on 10 August and runs to 10 November 2019

Monday, September 16, 2019


Progeny, 2018, one-of-a-kind artist book; pigmented drawing ink,
gouache and hand stitching with cloth binding, 16.5 x 91 cm (open)

If you happen to be in Perth, WA, you have until next Saturday, 21 September, to see BETWEEN THE SHEETS 2019 before it ends its run. In this exhibition, 70 works by 59 artists from 7 countries challenge notions of the traditional book. Makers include printmakers, photographers, architects, wordsmiths, textile artists, painters, sculptors, digital artists, and a glass artist.

Two of my artist books are included in the show, both of them one-of-a-kind: Progeny, 2018 (pictured top) and Firebrand, 2017.

In this extract from the catalogue essay, Paul Uhlmann, Senior Lecturer at Edith Cowan University describes ‘... the endless list of classifications; altered books; the book as unopenable object; livre de peintre (the beautiful painter’s book); the book as performance; the book as skin and body; the book as memory object; the book as archive; the book as concept and many more. Since my initial encounter, artists’ books have grown exponentially and become an international phenomenon; many attempts have been made to define the characteristics of an artist’s book; to tame it, to give it shape but an artist’s book – a book made by an artist – will defy classification, just as all artists strive to develop their own unique voice.’

To view individual works, accompanied by statements from the artists, go HERE.

Gallery Central,
12 Aberdeen Street,
Perth WA
Hours: 10 am - 4.45 pm weekdays
11 am- 4 pm Saturday
The exhibition runs until Saturday 21 September 2019

Friday, August 30, 2019

Moth Migration Project

Moth Woman Press publications at Moth Migration Project, Oak Hill
Gallery, Mornington

The well-travelled Moth Migration Project alights on Oak Hill Gallery this coming Sunday. In celebration of this and all things Moth, a selection of Moth Woman Press publications will be available for the duration of the show. Among them is There was once... the collected fairy tales, our illustrated anthology that includes The Story of the Moth Masks (also in zine form) The Moth Queen and the Wasp, The Moth and the Butterflies and Moth Eaten.

100 Mornington-Tyabb Rd
Mornington Vic 3931
Open daily 11 am - 4 pm
Phone:(03) 5973 4299

Moth Migration Project opens on Sunday 1st September from 2 - 4 pm and continues until 30th September.

Monday, July 29, 2019

Firebrand in BETWEEN THE SHEETS 2019

Firebrand, 2017, one-of-a-kind artist book, pigmented drawing ink
and gouache with cloth binding, 16.5 x 91 cm (open)
Photo credit: Tim Gresham

Firebrand, 2017, is one of two of my artist books to be selected for BETWEEN THE SHEETS – ARTISTS’ BOOK EXHIBITION 2019. (The other is Progeny, 2018). 

Pictured below: detailed views of Firebrand, followed by silhouetted back views of both books in the studio of photographer, Tim Gresham.

Gallery Central
Aberdeen Street
Perth WA 6000

The show runs from 29 August - 21 September.

For further information, go HERE.

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Tall Poppies in Canberra

Tall Poppies (2013, unique artist book. Pigmented drawing ink
on Khadi paper with cloth binding, 80 x 15 cm, open). 

Collection: National Library of Australia

Pictured top: installation view of Tall Poppies (2013) our vertical concertina book, snapped yesterday at the National Library of Australia along with reflected library visitors. Click on images for a clearer view.

Many thanks to Dr. Carole Wilson for the photos.