Jonas Kulikauskas, Publisher, A Thousand Words Press

Jonas Kulikauskas with his Kodak 2D 8"x10" camera at Capitol Reef National Park. Photo by Matas Kulikauskas.

Smile for the Birdie!

A Letter from the Publisher

My publishing instincts can be traced to the summers I spent in the 1970s visiting my grandparents, who had a maze of shelves, boxes, and filing cabinets crammed with books and ephemera in their basement. When I was a child, it was both an eerie and magical experience exploring what seemed like miles of corridors built from paper. My grandfather Bronius Kviklys (1913–1990) was a collector of coins, stamps, maps, and interesting objects. Only later in life did I appreciate how much this prolific writer had accomplished with his typewriter as a publisher, editor, author, and historian. 

Now I find myself surrounded with books and collectibles. I have a great appreciation for objects that are classic, well crafted, and built to last. I also find beauty in deterioration and wear. It is no wonder that I am passionate about historic printmaking and alternative photographic processes.

I am using publishing to report back on what I have learned, observed, or survived. I like to find the wonderful in the mundane, reveal something new from what appears to be nothing, and offer unexpected perspectives on institutions, communities, and traditions. My aim is to author and/or curate positive, beautiful, and thoughtful books and works on paper.

Inspired by all things historic as I am, I chose the Canary Songster, an early twentieth century brass toy, as the symbol for A Thousand Words Press. Filling the cylindrical base with water and blowing through the straw causes a melodic, warbling, tweet, while the beak, wings, and tail flap with joy! Photographers used these toys to distract and entertain children while taking their pictures, prompting the phrase, "Smile for the Birdie."

This symbol reminds me that a single image can bring a new story, fond remembrance, or moment of delight to the forefront. This is the warm feeling I hope to carry in the pages of our books.

Many thanks,

Jonas Kulikauskas

Publisher, Owner, and Operator, A Thousand Words Press