Penngrove, CA: Spell & Bind Press, 2023. Hardcover. 700. Number 4 of 8 copies. Tiana Krähn is an accomplished book artist who makes small edition, hand-bound, letterpress printed poetry and story books under the name Spell & Bind Press. She writes about her work: "For me, hand setting type is a meditation. There is intention behind each letter, each word, each sentence. I believe that words, like spells cast into the world, should be carefully chosen. As I work I have pause to examine my motives. Poems and stories open portals in and out of other realms. Printing on a letterpress machine is such a physical process, and as the weight of the words sink deep within the page, I am always struck by the permanence of this action, and the beauty of marks that make meaning out of chaos and ink. The binding of books is yet another ritual I relish. It is work full of metaphor where each stitch is a scaffold in the building of a physical home to our thoughts and feelings, resulting in an intimate object to be kept close or to be shared. That is the magic of it all. " Bush Tea is an collection of vignettes, the memories of one man's childhood in rural Jamaica in the late 40's. As he grapples with the onset of Alzheimer's the simplicity of those early years are salve to his soul. Once bemused by the many jars of unlabeled herbs in my father's kitchen cupboard in London, I learned from him what he learned from his grandmother, that Bush Tea was the answer to all life's problems. It is a hot drink made from the healing herbs and edible plants one might find growing in the yard or along the roadside. Bound in red cloth with a black spine in a variation of a drum leaf binding, with a cream title label on the front cover. Black endpapers with images of plants. The book is letterpress printed on tea dyed Fabriano paper, with hand colored original illustrations that depict some of the traditional plants that might be used for tea in the Caribbean. In fine condition. Measures 5 x 6.5 inches. Unpaginated [about 15 pages]. ARTB/052423. Fine.
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Oakland, CA: The Prototype Press, 2015. Hardcover. Number 23 of 75 copies signed by the author and artist. Kirk Lombard is self-described as a small fish enthusiast, writer, tour guide, teacher, musician, actor, inveterate blogger, raconteur, commercial fisherman, puppet master, tenor, baseball historian, and…champion eel fisherman. He is the author of The Sea Forager's Guide to the Northern California Coast. His blog was called The Monkeyface News. From the press website: "From the dank holes and fetid shores of Kirk Lombard's mind comes a deeply strange book, part memoir, part how-to, and part poetry, all teaching of his dealings with learning how to catch -- and use to its full potential -- the storied Monkeyface Eel from in and around the shores of the San Francisco Bay." This was the first publication issued by The Prototype Press. The author describes how to fish for the monkeyface eel, how to tan an eel skin, and offers recipes for cooking eel. The book is printed in three colors on Somerset Book Paper from Monotype Hess Old Style and hand-set Libra types. The title page and Parts I & II are foil-stamped; the illustrations are printed relief from linoleum carvings done by Leighton Kelly. The cover is orange cow leather and green handmade paper from Twinrocker. Title in gilt to spine. The paper bears the watermark of Shotwell, as well a fishing hook, added specially for the project.There is a separate booklet of appendices of poems by Lombard. It was printed on paper handmade by the publishers with the help of Shotwell Paper Mill in San Francisco. The book and appendices booklet are in a red sleeve printed in black with "The First Edition of Notorious Eelman Kirk Lombard's Me, Myself, and the Monkeyface Eel." In fine condition. Measures 6.5 x 9 inches. 52 pages in length including text, foreword, introduction, and afterword. Fine.