Morgan Conservatory Staff
Baldwin Wallace University has an emphasis on the humanities and the arts, and offers students the opportunity to expand their knowledge and participate in volunteer opportunities on and off campus.
The Art Department offers BW students a variety of resources to be involved and to become hands on with the arts.
One of Cleveland’s hidden resources is the Morgan Conservatory, a renovated space that consists of volunteers, interns, students and artists that work together by using renewable sources.
Tom Balbo, BWU graduate of 1977, is the Art Director at the Morgan Conservatory and works to keep the renovated building a sustainable establishment.
The Morgan Conservatory
The Morgan Conservatory is a non-profit art center dedicated to the art of the book and the art of paper making. It is located on East 47th Street in Cleveland, Ohio. The establishment was originally a machine shop that was re-purposed and renovated in 2006. It is now a transformed space that consists of a gallery, paper making and print studios, as well as a Kozo Garden.
The garden consists of the Kozo plant which is a renewable source that produces the paper. The paper pulp is made by harvesting the Kozo Bark. The Kozo is then cooked and beaten down until it is ready to be moved and mixed in the paper making studio. The Morgan Conservatory offers a variety of classes and workshops. BW students have participated in the past as interns and volunteers at the conservatory, and assist in the studio and garden to help create the different papers.
Art Director/ BW Graduate Tom Balbo
Tom Balbo graduated Baldwin Wallace University in 1977 with a B.A. in Studio Arts. Tom began his Masters Degree at Syracuse University’s College of Visual and Performing Arts in New York, and completed his M.F.A at Syracuse in Studio Arts.
Tom Balbo is currently the Artistic Director at the Morgan Conservatory. Tom’s work has been exhibited and shown in many different galleries. Over the years he has earned numerous awards and critical attention. In addition, his work has been featured in many collections.
Tom Balbo’s interest in the paper making field has led him to gain technical expertise in this area and he now dedicates his time at the renovated machine shop that is now The Morgan Conservatory.
Annual Kozo Harvest Days
The Morgan Conservatory hosts an Annual Kozo Harvest Day where the Kozo, Japanese Mulberry, trees are harvested and later processed by hand. The fibers are then used to make sheets of eastern style paper. The Morgan Conservatory is the only facility in northeast Ohio growing this Japanese Mulberry for paper making.
Saturday, Nov. 9 and Sunday, Nov. 10 will be the 4th Annual Kozo Harvest days. The event is free and open to volunteers. This year BW’s Art Attack Organization will be attending the event, and members will help with the harvest process.
A variety of volunteers, paper makers, interns, board members and staff will work together to harvest the garden. The Kozo trees will be cut down, steamed, then the bark will be stripped and scraped and finally beaten into pulp for paper making. This hands-on event runs 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday.