The Printing Museum, located in the Montrose district, has showcased historical items relating to the art and science of printing since the 1980s. There you will find original historic prints, working printing presses, books, printmaking, letterpress and papermaking studios.
What looks to be a small building as you enter, quickly turns into a maze of softly lit hallways displaying framed historical documents and delicate prints. Various rooms exhibit large printing presses made of wood and metal that actually still work, giving visitors a glimpse into printing methods from centuries ago.
Gothic lights and a cobble stone path leads you to the papermaking and printmaking studios where paper, art and other items are created using age-old techniques. Just past the studios is an almost hidden movie theatre with rows of plush seating for viewing short videos on the history of the printing press and other subjects.
The Printing Museum had an electrical fire in 2016 and spent 20 months repairing the building and making upgrades. They are reopening the museum with an Open House event scheduled for Jan 25 from 6-8 pm.
Norm Pegram, PremierIMS CEO, had the unique opportunity to give his UH Digital Media students a sneak peek tour before the museum officially reopened. Museum artist-in-residence Charles Criner started the tour with a working replica of the Gutenberg press and students participated in the hands-on printing of a leaf of the Gutenberg Bible. The tour continued with a 19th-century Columbian iron handpress, Linotype machine and the first Xerox copier and Apple computer. After taking a peek inside the papermaking and printmaking studios, the students watched a film on the history of the printing press.
The Printing Museum does a fabulous job of showing the public just how integral the printing press was in changing the world. From working presses to centuries-old printed documents, equipment, craft studios, and film, the museum documents how printed communication and art was the greatest contributors to the development of the civilized world and to the continued advancement of freedom and literacy.
The Printing Museum - www.printingmuseum.org
1324 W. Clay Street, Houston, TX 77019