James Reid-Cunningham is a bookbinder and conservator in private practice in Cambridge, MA.
He studied history and art history at Johns Hopkins University and Tufts University before studying bookbinding at the North Bennet Street School in Boston. He worked as a book conservator at Harvard University and the Boston Athenaeum for over thirty years. He was the adjunct lecturer in book conservation in the graduate art conservation department at Buffalo State College (SUNY) from 2009 to 2013 and served as the President of the Guild of Book Workers from 2006 to 2010.
In 2006, he received the Distinguished Alumni Award from the North Bennet Street School. He received the Helen Warren DeGoyler Prize in American Bookbinding in 2018.
In addition to his conservation work, he is the creator of artistic bindings and book objects that explore traditional bookbinding structures in conjunction with modern materials. His artistic bindings are exhibited nationally and internationally.
A Gathering of Leaves 2022-2023
Bodleian Libraries; Sotheby's, London; University of Edinburgh
Books on the Verge, The Gallery @ Metro, Bridgeport, CT. 2022
Eliot's Bible: Celebrating 100 Years of the Vining Collection, Barrington Arts Center, Gordon College, 2021
American Bookbinders Museum, San Francisco; Robert C. Williams Museum of Papermaking, Atlanta, GA; North Bennet Street School, Boston; Collins Memorial Library, University of Puget Sound, Tacoma, WA; Cushing Memorial Library, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX
40 Years: Celebrating the New England Chapter of the Guild of Book Workers2021
The Boston Athenaeum; Baker Berry Library, Dartmouth College
Drop Dead Gorgeous 2021
Minnesota Center for the Book; Maggs Bros., London
The Grolier Club;The American Bookbinders Museum, San Francisco; Marriot Library, University of Utah,;Austin Public Library, Austin, TX
He has taught bookbinding and conservation workshops at many venues including:
National Conservation Center for Rare Books, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou, China
University of California at Los Angeles
Weissman Preservation Center, Harvard University
Paper and Book Intensive
Garage Annex School for Book Arts, Easthampton, MA.
North Bennet Street School, Boston
Guild of Book Workers
New England Museum Association
Dartmouth College Libraries
King Library Press, University of Kentucky at Lexington
Miniature Book Society
San Francisco Center for the Book
Kilgarlin Center for the Preservation of the Cultural Record at the University of Texas at Austin
University of Utah
Hand Bookbinders of California
American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works