Art + Design

Design Desk: Hatch Show Print

On a recent trip to Nashville, TN I took the opportunity to visit Hatch Show Print, a must-see for any design, print, or music lover.

Hatch Show Print

Amazingly, they’ve been open since 1879! According to my google sleuthing, this makes them the oldest print shop in the country. Hatch is best-known for designing and printing show posters for everyone from Elvis to Johnny Cash to the Beastie Boys, but throughout their history they’ve also printed billboards, ads, posters for sporting events, handbills, and much more.

Hatch Show Print Posters

I was fortunate to get a tour from Jim Sherraden, Hatch’s Master Printer & Curator, and Studio Manager Celene Aubry. They showed me around their brand-new space inside Downtown Nashville’s Country Music Hall of Fame. Their recent move, aside from giving them much needed additional square footage, also offers a unique opportunity for Hatch to interact with the public in a new way. They are located inside the large lobby of the museum, and their print shop has floor to ceiling windows along one side, allowing passersby to watch the presses in action.

Hatch Show Print Entrance

Hatch-in-Action

They have rows and rows of antique wood type as well as thousands of hand-carved woodblocks—some over a century old—that continue to be used in their prints today.

Hatch-Show-Print-wood-type

135 years after being founded, Hatch is still a very busy shop, printing up to 600 different jobs annually for clients all over the world.

Hatch-Show-Print-press

Hatch-Show-Print-interior

Hatch-Show-Print-woodblocks

Hatch-Show-Print-shelves

Hatch-Show-Print-inking

In addition to their large print shop, Hatch also has a gift shop, a gallery, and a classroom where visitors can learn about the letterpress process and print their own poster.

Hatch-Show-Print-gift-shop

Hatch-Show-Print-gallery

To learn more about Hatch Show Print, I highly recommend a visit! But if you’re not in the Nashville vicinity, you can check out our book about this legendary shop.

Hatch Show Print cover

Long live print!

Emily Dubin
Designer

Emily Dubin

Emily Dubin

Senior Designer at Chronicle Books, collector of magazines, watches, and vintage ephemera. See more of her work at dubindesign.com.
Emily Dubin

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