Campus & Community

A look inside: Adams House

3 min read

The House that keeps the ink flowing at Bow and Arrow Press

Five staff photographers will offer close-ups of the interests, activities, and personalities inside five Harvard Houses in installments over the course of the academic year. In the first, Kris Snibbe visits Adams House, home of the Bow and Arrow Press.

During Bow and Arrow Press’ weekly “Party in the Press,” a poem from Charles Baudelaire’s “Les Fleurs du Mal” is set in lead type and crimson ink and is spread over the printing rollers.

A thin sheet of maple veneer is fed into the press by Daniel Gross ’13, student press master, who explains his affinity for printing: “You’re taking a bunch of metal, pulling it across a piece of paper, you feel the indentation of the metal pressing ink into the page. On a computer, it wouldn’t be the same.”

Beyond poetry and printmaking, Bow and Arrow Press is used for special House functions, such as creating winter feast invitations. Zachary Sifuentes, visiting lecturer on visual and environmental studies and resident tutor in poetry at Adams House, says, “It leaves a bite in the page, a tactile imprint — it tells us that we’re going to leave one of these events with a memory that is real.”