Washington DC: Abstract Orange, 2019. Number 6 of 36 copies signed and numbered by the book artist. The book was published on May 31, 2019 in celebration of Walt Whitman's 200th birthday. The book artist writes: "The book explores ideas central to Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass including transcendentalism, or the inherent goodness of nature, and realism, depicting familiar things as they are. It captures both the complexity and simplicity of nature by juxtaposing dimensional paper grass texture and a quote about nature and wonder. The book is not a reprinting of all of Whitman’s words, but an art object that encapsulates the feeling of Whitman." Her evocative work is done as a box that opens like a traditional book. The inside front cover and back cover are covered with cream paper that includes quotes from Whitman along with his image. The inside of the box/book are several spiky rows of grass leaves crafted from green paper. The box is covered with green paper with the title, author and press name in a lighter shad of green. In fine condition. Measures 5.25 x 7.25 inches. ARTISTB/120519. Fine.
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San Francisco: Deeply Game Publications, 2012. Hardcover. Number 45 of 55 copies. Signed by the author and book artists. Book artist Sara Press collaborated with Andrew Rottner to create this exquisite tribute to printing’s golden age. "The story, by Christina Lauritsen, mis-remembers H.C. Andersen’s classic tale of the same name, transforming it into a story of revelation and madness. The visual progression of the book mirrors the plot, pitting the beauty of the decorative arts against the intense and unpredictable messiness of human experience. This book confronts the inevitability of loss and bows to intellectual freedom and its attendant risks." [artists' statement]. The book is printed in Garamond and Bembo types on Moab Entrada paper. It features two 26 inch wide foldouts with illustrations by Rottner. The striking cover is done from a cut-marbled-paper and brocade. The book measures 7 x 9 inches. It is unpaginated. Deeply Game Productions creates and distributes the art works of Sara Press and her collaborators. Sara L. Press is a photographer, printmaker and book artist based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Many of her projects examine peculiar areas of overlap between nature and culture (for example: dog fighting, feral children, and our co-evolution with snakes). Sara has also wrestled with the relationship between creativity and the scientific method. Recently, Sara has turned to constructions of masculinity and femininity in our culture (such as human bloodsports and altered fairy-tales). Her work can be seen in public collections around the country and are also in many library and private collections. A lovely book in fine condition. PRI/021919. Fine.
Freeville, NY: Carol Schwartzott, 2007. Hard Cover. Number 24 of 25 copies signed and numbered by the book artist. This is a particularly beautiful version of the famous Rubaiyat. In her artist's statement Schwartzott writes that as a collector of Rubaiyats she began to toy with creating her own version in 2006. "The book is divided into seven segments, each separated by a divider of hand-marbled Japanese paper. The first contains the title page and introduction and the last an artist's statement, bibliography and colophon. The remaining five are dedicated to the seventy-five quatrains of FitzGerald's first edition. Each contains a vellum window, reminiscent of a Persian archway that opens to reveal my version of a miniature painting." Bound in light blue Japanese cloth with an intricate wood cut out to front board. The pristine interior was laser printed with archival ink onto Mohawk Via vellum and Moab Entrada paper. The prints were then finished with color pencil, paint, gold and silver leaf. Housed in clamshell box covered in the same cloth as the book. In fine condition. Unpaginated. ARTB/120219. Fine.
Berkeley: University of California Press, 1981, 2018. Karen Hanmer’s artist-made books are physical manifestations of personal essays that intertwine history, culture, politics, science and technology. She utilizes both traditional and contemporary book structures, and the work is often playful in content or format. Karen was the winner of the Jury Prize for Binding in the 2009 Helen Warren DeGolyer American Bookbinding Competition. One of only ten graduates of the American Academy of Bookbinding’s Fine Binding program, she has studied with many notable fine binders. She exhibits widely, and her work is included in collections ranging from Tate Britain and the Library of Congress to UCLA and Graceland. Her masterful bindings wed the ancient art of book binding with the high tech use of the computer to aid her process. Karen designed and constructed this exquisite unique signed binding for this first trade edition of the famous Arion Press's 1979 edition with its striking illustrations by renowned illustrator Barry Moser. Her binding is based on the non-adhesive “clip-on cover” structure developed by UK binder Kathy Abbott. To create this binding the text block is disbound, the outer folios guarded and then sewn with long stitch using blue linen thread into the calf vellum wrapper, covered in limp calf vellum case, with tabbed corners. Hand titling to spine is done in 22k moon gold, with a blue acrylic line applied through stencil along the bottom edges of the front and rear covers. The endpapers are of handmade Ruscombe Mill pale wove paper in a single folio with hooked flexi endleaf. The top edge of the text block is covered with graphite. Karen writes: "The pale vellum references the white whale, and the blue line a turbulent sea. The stark contrast between these elements mirrors the horror steadily building in anticipation of the Pequod’s encounter with Moby Dick. Use of blue inside and out also references the color of the initial caps in the Arion Press and Deluxe California editions of this text." This is an impressive binding that beautifully pays honor to one of the great American novels. Book measures 10.5 x 7 x 1.5 inches. Housed in a dark blue clamshell box with a white gilt and blue title label to spine. In fine condition. FINEBINDING/080618.
New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1979, 2011. Hardcover. Karen Hanmer’s artist-made books are physical manifestations of personal essays that intertwine history, culture, politics, science and technology. She utilizes both traditional and contemporary book structures, and the work is often playful in content or format. Karen was the winner of the Jury Prize for Binding in the 2009 Helen Warren DeGolyer American Bookbinding Competition. One of only ten graduates of the American Academy of Bookbinding’s Fine Binding program, she has studied with many notable fine binders. She exhibits widely, and her work is included in collections ranging from Tate Britain and the Library of Congress to UCLA and Graceland. Her masterful bindings wed the ancient art of book binding with the high tech use of the computer to aid her process. This spectacular signed unique designer binding for a first edition of Tom Wolfe's The Right Stuff was inspired by Wolfe’s notion of single combat warriors battling the Cold War in the heavens on behalf of the US and USSR. Further inspiration was taken from space-themed advertising of the era. The binding thus incorporates various patriotic and space race icons from the US and USSR, portrayed as constellations, planets and spacecraft. In full black goatskin binding with laced-in boards, with edge-to-edge black goatskin doublures and black suede flyleaves. The boards are decorated with the space related images; some are back pared and cushioned onlays, some laser-printed, and some areas sprinkled with gold leaf. The page edges are graphite and gold-sprinkled, and there are hand sewn silk headbands. The book's original dust jacket is bound in. A beautiful exemplar of Karen's meticulous and creative work. Housed in a black cloth clamshell box with red leather title label to spine. Book measures 8.5 x 5.5. x 1.75 inches. In fine condition. FINEBINDING/080618. Fine.
New York: Whitney Museum of American Art, 1989. 1 of 140 copies. Signed by the author and the book artist. This scarce and intriguing limited edition work was produced to benefit the Library of the Whitney Museum of Art. "Heat" is a classic short story by the renowned and prolific writer Joyce Carol Oates. "It tells the story of the murder of eleven-year-old identical twins, Rhea and Rhoda Kunkel, through the eyes of a childhood friend who is now an adult. Oates weaves the story together like bursts of heat on a sultry day. The story begins with a reference to the “rippling” heat of the summer day as the girls ride their bicycles toward Whipple’s Ice. In the next scene, the twins are in matching white caskets in a funeral parlor. Again, reference is made to the heat. In a narrative that borders on stream of consciousness, Oates introduces the girls, the narrator, and Roger Whipple. The child narrator describes the girls as inseparable, full of life, and drawing energy and power from each other. She describes their lives and their death with the innocence of a child’s perceptions."[Enotes.com] The book's production is inventive and fitting for the story. It was produced and edited by May Castleberry of the Whitney and Leslie Miller of the Greenfell Press. The work's two volumes resemble a young person''s diaries. They are bound in white leather with gilt title and ruling to the front covers and closed by a gold clasp. The text was handwritten by Robert Gober and printed on Saunders paper. It was handbound at Booklab in Austin. Gober's illustrations for the endpapers are lithographs printed at Derriere L'Etoile Studios in New York. The volumes are housed in a custom purple cloth clamshell box. The volumes are fine in a near fine box.