Center for Creativity

Text & conText Lab


Wondering when Text & conText will be open?

Throughout the fall, we will continue to offer the majority of our programming virtually, including workshops, open mic nights, and some other special events we have in the works.

When the University moves to Guarded Risk posture, we will work with our building partners to determine how and when we can re-open our physical spaces! 

Please watch our social media, or sign up for the Center for Creativity e-newsletter to keep updated on plans as they develop.


Visit for a tour!

Curious to visit Text & conText to get some ideas about how to use the space? Email us to arrange a tour/demonstration.


The Text & conText Lab, a Center for Creativity/University Library System partnership on the third floor of Hillman Library, provides an active environment for the creation, manipulation, and/or disassembly of text. Text & conText is open to all Pitt students, faculty, and staff. Both individual and group work can be accommodated; this is a space for experiential activity rather than study

All are welcome. Text & conText is designed to encourage the development of a community of people who value curiosity and imagination, where both risk-taking and careful attention to craft are recognized as important aspects of creative work.

Text & conText features a Vandercook proof press and opportunities for bookbinding, papermaking, and much more. It will have hours for open “studio” time when people can drop by and try new things or continue work on projects they’ve begun. Individuals or small groups can work together on their own or seek assistance from staff. Text & conText will also feature scheduled programming.

Hours will be set aside regularly for faculty who wish to reserve the space for guided projects with students in their courses, including time for classes who are actively engaged with faculty librarians. Text & conText provides an opportunity to deepen and extend primary source pedagogy, and to develop rich collaborations among librarians and staff in Distinctive Collections, C4C staff, faculty, and students.

Proximity to ULS Distinctive Collections facilitates confrontation with other readers’ and writers’ context for text: graphic novels; illuminated manuscripts; handwritten letters — and how the individual letters within those texts vary over time and hand; the physical art of binding books, marbling, selecting frontispieces, and book jacket concept and design.