Teaching Suminagashi at Clark University

Yesterday I had the pleasure of visiting the Book Arts class at my alma mater, Clark University where I was a guest artist and taught the class Suminagashi marbling. The class went really well – twelve participants marbled over a hundred sheets of paper!

Ruth Teaches Suminagashi at Clark |demonstrating for the class

Check out the gallery to see some lovely suminagashi in progress – I had a great time and hopefully so did everyone else.

Ruth Teaches Suminagashi at Clark - Oh no! I need some more dispersant

Ruth Teaches Suminagashi at Clark  - Student marbling in small tray

Teaching Suminagashi Marbling at Clark University

Suminagashi Class - start with large rings

Suminagashi Class - the more rings you add, the smaller they get

Suminagashi marbling - making a print with rice paper

Suminagashi Marbling Class - pulling the paper off of the marbling bath to reveal the print



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Mike D! I bet it can be done with silk neck ties – next time you swing around the cod I’ll show you!


Hello, Im confused. Basically I want to do paper marbling but im getting confused between products used to make the water thicker, dispersants, sufactants, which paints? Do some paints or inks have the ability to stay on the surface and not mix? Or does anything need help when being applied? When do I mix them in also. I heard I can make the water thicker but using cornstartch or laundry startch. Im on a very tight budget. Would inks be ok to use without anything added? Or do they need help also?
Please can you help


Hi Jacqui!

There are several types of marbled paper – one called Turkish Marbling uses the thickened water you’re describing. However, Suminagashi marbling uses just plain water, but you do need a special type of ink to make sure it will float – You might try this Boko Undo Suminagashi Marbling Kit because then you won’t need to buy any dispersant.


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