A short history of RiverPoint
A licensing agreement reached with Strathmore Artist Papers in July 2014 is just the latest chapter in a successful collaboration that has bridged departments within UW–Stevens Point, and linked the university with the private sector. The story begins several years ago, in early 2011, with an idea from Bob Erickson, professor of art and design: The university is home to the College of Fine Arts & Communication, where students and faculty use a lot of fine art paper, and to the Department of Paper Science & Engineering, where students learn papermaking. Could the paper science department make paper for the artists? The goal: Create a high-quality, archival art paper at an economical cost for students and faculty in the visual arts. The two departments, along with the Wisconsin Institute for Sustainable Technology, initiated a project that culminated in the development of RiverPoint art paper. The project was possible because UW–Stevens Point boasts a pilot paper machine, a smaller version of the behemoths in Wisconsin’s commercial paper mills. Learn more about the pilot paper machine in this short video
Art faculty provided paper samples and described what they needed in a quality art paper. WIST and PS&E produced paper in small trial runs, which students and faculty then used in all sorts of ways to test its quality and performance with various media. Several additional development runs later we had a paper that was "just right" in spring 2012. Since then, UW–Stevens Point students and faculty have been using this archival paper to great success in everything from digital printing to drawing to watercolor.
The project began simply with the idea of making great value art paper for the UW-Stevens Point campus. However, the paper was so successful we decided to make it available more widely. We introduced the paper at Print: MKE, the 2013 Southern Graphics Council International Conference in Milwaukee (photos at right). The new paper generated considerable media interest, which led to a collaboration with Strathmore Artist Papers to market and distribute RiverPoint and to develop two additional grades of printmaking paper. 500 Series RiverPoint Cotton will continue to be made at UW-Stevens Point. 300 Series Lightweight and 400 Series Heavyweight printmaking papers are made in Wisconsin paper mills. The complete line of printmaking papers will be available at fine art and craft stores. Art work on the 300 Series pads is by UW-Stevens Point student Lanea Zagrezebski, and the art work on the 500 Series is by UW-Stevens Point graduate Shawn Ganther.
A versatile art paper
500 Series RiverPoint Cotton art paper is ideal for a broad array of drawing and
printing applications. It is 100 percent cotton, archival paper,
internally sized to provide great results in both dry and wet media.
Whether working in charcoal or watercolor, printing digitally or silk
screening, create in confidence with RiverPoint paper. This smooth, durable paper is a versatile performer.
500 Series RiverPoint art paper is made by the Wisconsin Institute for Sustainable Technology on the UW-Stevens Point pilot paper machine, the fastest student-run paper machine in the country.
Woodcut — Relief — Litho — Intaglio — Screen Print — Letter Press — Drawing (Wet and Dry Media) — Digital
Learn more about 500 Series RiverPoint and Strathmore's complete line of printmaking papers.
RiverPoint® is a registered trademark of the Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System d/b/a University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point.