Annual general meetings

Annual general meeting 2023 (Offenbach, Germany)

Association of European Printing Museums

Minutes of the Annual General Meeting 2023

The Annual General Meeting was held on Saturday May 27, 2023 at the Klingspor Museum in Offenbach am Main (Germany).

Members present

Board of Directors: Robert Clerebaut (Belgium), Patrick Goossens (Treasurer, Belgium), Indra Kupferschmid (HBKsaar, Germany), Marie Manuel de Condinguy (Imprimerie nationale, France); Alan Marshall (Webmaster, France), Stefan Soltek (Chairman, Germany)

Board of Directors, represented: Zahra Benkass (France).
Excused: Joseph Belletante (Musée de l’Imprimerie et de la communication graphique, Lyon, France), Nadine Rousseau (Les mille univers, Bourges, France).

Ordinary members: Charlotte Biszewski, TYPA, Estonia; Valentyna Bochkovska, Museum of Book and Printing, Ukraine; Marit Brandsnes, Friends association of the Press Museum Fjeld-Ljom, Norway; Stéphane de Schrevel, Belgium; Joost Depuydt, Museum Plantin-Moretus, Belgium; Ion Georgescu, Asociatia Moara de hartie, Romania ; Jens Jørgen Hansen, Bogtrykker, Denmark ; Monika Jacobs, Kulturhuef, Print and Playing Card Museum of Luxembourg, Luxembourg ; Liudmyla Khaukha, Museum of Book and Printing, Ukraine ; Martyn Kramek, Book Art Museum, Poland ; Fernand Le Rachinel, Musée typographique Le Rachinel, France ; Hugh Macfarlane, Tudor Black Press, France; David MacMillan, Circuitous Root, USA; Lise Morisseau, Atelier-Musée de l’Imprimerie, France; Pieter Neirinckx, Industriemuseum, Belgium; Jan Erik Øvergård, Friends association of the Press Museum Fjeld-Ljom, Norway; Ed Rayher, Swamp Press, USA; Ronald, Steur, Stichting Lettergieten 1983/Type Foundry, Netherlands; Annikki Torgersen, Friends association of the Press Museum Fjeld-Ljom, Norway; Tymoteusz Tryzno, Book Art Museum, Poland; Katharina Walter, Museum für Druckkunst Leipzig, Germany.

Ordinary members represented: Nelly Gable, France; Thomas Gravemaker, Netherlands; Françoise Langlois, Association des Amis du Musée de l’imprimerie et de la communication graphique, France; Franck Vacheron, API, Switzerland.

Non-members present: Marina Kampka, Germany; Markus Kohz, effect Werbeatelier e.K., Germany; Maarten Renckens, Belgium; Dan Reynolds, Hochschule Niederrhein, Germany; Nicole Sauerwein-Pittich, pro LichtDruck gemeinnützige UG, Germany; Heike Schnotale, Germany; Johanna Siebein, Hochschule für Gestaltung Offenbach, Germany; Achilles Tzallas, Greece.


Opening by the Chairman of the General Meeting 2023.

Statement of the agenda and appointment of a meeting secretary: Marie Manuel de Condinguy.

Thanks to Alan Marshall for being so active in animating the website.

The general meeting begins at 11:05 a.m.

1. Attendance sheet

Approved by all AGM members present.

2. Approval of the minutes of the 2022 AGM

After reading and indicating the link to the minutes, the minutes are unanimously approved.

3. Chairman’s report to the AGM

First of all the President underlined the value of the good relations among board members as a foundation for cooperation over the years, notably in organising the annual conference and general meeting. Indeed one of the central functions of the board is to encourage talks on a wide range of issues.

Stefan Soltek went on to consider the rapid growth of printing – as expressed in new techniques and products, as well new attitudes towards the need to create digital collections in museums, and young people rediscovering printing as a way of artistic life.

He evoked the image of the atom to describe the different players in the field (the electorns) and the ONE reason that can keep them as a unit (the nucleus). As the nucleus is as little as it is strong, there is the disadvantage that it can not always particularly visible, but on the other hand ist presence may be felt in its inevitable power.

That is what AEPM hopes to offer. A forum which might act as a nucleus bringing the various facettes of print and printers together in fruitful encounters.

AEPM in Offenbach offers an opportunity to take an inspiring looks at both the cultural-historical and current industrial aspects of the world of printing.

With its two museums, the city covers many aspects of printing such as Senefelder and lithography and the development of typographic design on an artistic level, encouraged by the presence of Manroland sheetfed, the world’s fifth-largest manufacturer of printing presses.

Could it be that the self-esteem of being a printer, common in AEPM circles, still lives different ways among the experts who look after a modern press that seems to do many things as if by itself?

A consciousness of each other could sustain and support the social knowledge of communication through duplication of information by printing. The members of AEPM are grateful to have been able to get to know the work and spirit of Manroland sheetfed during this year’s meeting.

Within the traditional topics and aspects of work, AEPM recognises the need to take detailed action. Working groups are being considered and organised for this purpose.

All in all, it is clear that the association is actively on its way to preserving the heritage of printing culture.

The conference  is a positive signal in terms of exchange. Obviously all of you who are present today are an expression of the desire AEPM members to meet with each other. That said, it is not always easy for the board to meet your needs, if only because of it has only the most modest of resources to meet regularly to share ideas and debate our points of view.

So I wonder if it is not time to get deeper into the everyday issues that individual members of AEPM have to face. I think the board has a duty to launch events (bith digital and in-person) and to identify new perspectives. Museums are constantly on the move, each in their own way. How large is the Consensus necessary to keep AEPM going? We must not get stuck in a situation of an organisation obsessed by self-administration, far from the solid ground of cooperation among the members. To be clear, that is in no way a criticism! Simply, we have to sure of who we are as a community. What kind of exchanges do we want to develop and and what rhythm?

A central issue is the question of the e xtent to which we share a common idea of the term printing heritage? Are we clear concerning the focal points and the limits of the field in which the AEPM should be active? Is it about techniques or or is it about art? Is ‘both‘ a convincing answer?

Dear members – you see, at least from my point of view – Aepm is indeed alive. But it also has good reasons to ask: why so? And how can we guarantee that it will remain active years to come?

Thank you to all the members who believe in the AEPM and who support the Association’s work. Please do send your questions and remarks to the board, your ideas for strengthening this or that aspect. Keep AEPM going by activating your exchanges with each other and than let all of us participate.

Finally, a few words of thanks. To the museums in Offenbach, to the City and to Manroland and to HessenMetall.

Thanks also to our guests from different countries for having travelled to Offenbach. It takes time and money! May I especially mention Valentyna and Ludmylla from Kiev, and Charlotte from Estonia, our conference venue in 2024. Let us hope, even pray that we can confirm our contacts and realize our plans. And best wishes to those who are anxious about the future, whether there will be more war or a reasonable way to end it…

4. Statutory auditor’s report

After reading, the CAC report is unanimously approved.

5. Approval of 2022 financial statements

The financial status of the AEPM is good to very good. As we all could see in the ‘compte annuels’ sent to you via the link in the invitation to this AGM, made by our accounting office the Bureau Darville.

The main expenditure was on the organisation of the 2022 annual conference in hosted by the Atelier-musée de l’imprimerie in Malesherbes (France). The AEPM contributed 2 000 € to the costs while the organising museum handled the conference fees and had complete free rein as to how to use those funds. Our greatest expenditure for the year was on final costs (design and printing) of our publication Talking about printing. (3 340, 40 €). We also spent a little over 2 500 € on general costs, principally on postal costs which were greater than usual because of the book. Our accountants fees were 554,60€. Costs for our website were minimal: 111,86 €. Bank and Paypal charges were 227,75 and 81,5 € respectively.

On the income side we received 6 040 € in membership fees. We did not receive any conference fees since registration was handled directly by the organising museum. Extra income came from supporting members who paid 200 € instead of the usual 50 € membership fee. Great gratitude is again expressed towards those supporting members: the Amis du Musée de l’imprimerie et de la communication graphique (Lyon, France), Peter Louis Vrijdag of the Steendrukmuseum (Valkenswaard, The Netherlands) Jean-Paul Maury of the Atelier-museé de l’imprimerie in Malesherbes (France) and Frank Romano of the Museum of Printing in Havershill (United States).

Our cash situation (ING bank account and Paypal) at the closure of the financial year was just over 10 268 €.

The more precise details, as mentioned can be analysed in the official report. How this all relates to previous years has been reviewed in the overview by our president.

During the discussion which followed the treasurer’s report it was asked how many members the Association has.

Alan Marshall took the floor to indicate that membership for the year 2023 should be around one hundred from various organizations (museums, heritage workshops, collectors, etc.). This number is constantly rising.

One of the members asked whether it would be possible to extend the program to include more people from outside museums (graphic designers, etc.).

Indra Kupfersmid pointed out that she herself has been a member since 2012 and that the membership conferences are open to anyone who might be interested.

The accounts having been explained by Patrick Goossens, AEPM Treasurer, they are adopted unanimously.

6. Determination of membership fees for 2023

No change in membership fees.

This item is adopted unanimously.

6. Determination of membership fees for 2023

No change in membership fees.

This item is adopted unanimously.

7. Discharge of the auditor

This item is adopted unanimously.

8. Renewal of the statutory auditor’s term of office

This item is adopted unanimously.

9. Discharge of the members of the Board of Directors for their terms of office in the previous year

This item is adopted unanimously.

10. Renewal of the Association’s Board of Directors

As the term of office is three years, the Board of Directors is up for renewal at the 2023 Annual General Meeting.

Current members:
Francisco Ânon Roig (Spain) : member
Joseph Belletante (Lyon – France) : member
Robert Clerebaut (Brussels) : member
Marie Manuel de Condinguy (Douai – France): member (who replaced Pascal Fulacher as representative of the Atelier du livre d’art et de l’estampe during the year)
Patrick Goossens (Antwerp – Brussels): Treasurer
Indra Kupferschmid (Germany): member
Alan Marshall (France): member – webmaster
Stefan Soltek (Germany) : member – president
Nadine Rousseau (Bourges – France): member (who replaced Frédéric Terrier as representative of Mille univers during the year)

Board secretary Zahra Benkass has decided to retire from the board.

Two new candidates are proposed:
Lise Morisseau: Atelier-musée de l’imprimerie (France)
Charlotte Biszewski: Typa (Estonia)

Proposed by Indra Kupferschmid, their candidatures are warmly welcomed and this item is unanimously approved.

11. Budget 2023-24

For 2023 the organisers of the conference in Offenbach (Germany) stepped into to replace the original location in France which had to be abandoned because of the Imprimerie Nationale’s very considerable workload this year.

Expendidature on the website will be greater than in the last couple of years due to the preparation of the World Hand Press Database sometime around the end of the year.

The financial outlook for further years looks good. The next conference in 2024 will be in Tartu, of which we expect the registration fees will be handled directly by TYPA the organising museum. On the income side we hope, expect even, to maintain our membership at the same level as usual.

12. Perspectives for 2023

Members are invited to make proposals on certain issues to enhance AEPM’s involvement.

Members are invited to publicize their activities: organization of workshops, communication around artists’ books, lithographers, etc.

Here are a few ideas for communicating with the help of the website:
Acquisitions: support requested
Sharing knowledge / know-how

13. Next AGM 2024 and conference venue

The annual conference and the AGM are expected to take place in Estonia where they will be hosted by our colleagues at TYPA.

This will be confirmed within a month as to feasibility and exact dates.

Members are invited to make themselves known as to the possibility of hosting the AGM and conferences, particularly for 2025.

In order to better inform potential candidates, Lise Morisseau, in light of her experience with the organization of the 2022 conference at the Atelier-musée de l’imprimerie, will work with Alan Marshall to improve the existing Guidelines for conference hosts.

14. Other business

There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 12:26pm.

Marie MANUEL de CONDINGUY (meeting secretary)