Minneapolis: Angel Bomb Press, 2022. Deluxe Edition. Number 31 of 50 copies, signed by the artist. This story was originally published in "Astounding Science-Fiction" in August 1938 under the pseudonym Don A. Stuart. It was later adapted into multiple film versions, the most recent being "The Thing" in 2011. This horrific tale of alien encounters and Antarctic exploration is presented here in a fine letterpress edition with nineteen striking, color illustrations by Todd Thyberg. It is in a special binding of quarter tan goatskin over blue Japanese cloth covered boards. It is housed in blue cloth covered tryptich folding case with an interior folder holding a suite of five letterpress illustrations, each signed and dated by the artist. The case is made to look like a government file with maps lining the interior and an official resin medallion stating "Secondary Polar Expedition: Antarctica" to the front panel. The interior maps have been hand-altered with pencil notes of expedition locations. The book, maps, and illustrations were letterpress printed with Ehrhardt Monotype and Haboro Contrast types on Classic Crest Bare White eggshell paper. Polymer plates by the Boxcar Press. Binding by the Campbell Logan Bindery featuring a hand cast, hand painted resin medallion by the artist on the front of the case. 60 pages. PRI/072423. Fine.
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Minneapolis: Angel Bomb Press, 2020. Limited to 125 copies signed and numbered by the book artist, Todd Thyberg. He writes in the colophon that the book took over two years to write, create, and print. He states: "This experiential read was conceived as an ode to H.P. Lovecraft, whose books I had discovered and read profusely as a teenager growing up in a small town in rural North Dakota....I knew I wanted to be a writer, to breathe life into stories that transported the reader to realms unknown. H.P. Lovecraft gifted the world with a style of cosmic horror and weird fiction that was previously unknown. In homage, Todd created a mythical and mystical expedition to the steppes of Siberia to find the temple and artifacts of a mysterious people that supposedly once inhabited this barren and forbidding land. He says, "In the winter of ‘18, I rented a cabin in the woods of Wisconsin and sequestered myself for a week, sketching, researching and writing down plot points. I took an historic event that fascinates me and turned it on its head, spinning it into the world of old gods and monsters that thrilled me as a kid. I wanted to celebrate and honor the creepy cosmic horror that made Lovecraft’s work so unique. One of the men on the expedition is required to document their findings. Odd diagrams and even odder structures are found and recorded for the archives at Miskatonic University. What is it that they find? What happens to the expedition when they find it?" It’s all hidden within. But be forewarned! Many who have seen the contents of The Miskatonic Papers have died horrible deaths or gone completely insane! The valiant quest for knowledge may lead you down a path that branches into dark corners of the night, filled with arcane shadows. Never travel there alone and be cautious where you step. If you hear a wet, rustling noise behind you, you had best run screaming. After exploring Todd's remarkable and complex production, the reader will indeed understand Todd's warning! The work comes in a foil-stamped grey clothbound clamshell box with three sealed folders inside.Todd urges the reader to break the seals and pore through the contents of the folders. One includes a broadside for the expedition, drawings, two letters, a rubbing, telegrams from the field, and an amazing handwritten expedition journal. All of them letterpress printed, aged, and weathered. The Expedition Broadside appears stained with ale and smudges from the hands of inquisitive sailors. It states that Professor Tyler Freeborn seeks able-bodied men to risk life and limb for the advancement of science. Do you have a thirst for adventure? Perhaps you should apply. Each piece of the book was made to look as if it was created 100 years ago. Stains, creases, and even burned edges will provide the reader with a rich experience when delving through the ephemera and piecing the story together. Printed on a selection of stocks as well as vintage business cards and journal pages, with too many typefaces to name and lots of handwriting as well. Letterpress printed at the Angel Bomb studio. In fine condition. ARTSB/071320. Fine.
Toronto: Biting Dog Press, 2019. Hardcover. 1 of 35 copies, signed by the translator on the title page and the designer on the colophon. An examination of the "Necronomicon" - "a scientific diary of the putatively insane doctor known as Abdullah Alhazred. He was a scientist and an alchemist who believed cannibalistic funerary rites could both appease the spirits of the dead and access the divine" (page 13). It includes a fascinating discussion of previous translations, historical contextualization, medical and philosophical explanations behind Alhazred's practices, biographical facts about the doctor, and new translations of the five extracts. According to Alhazred, if performed using the correct rituals, ingestion of the dead could transfer their energy or life force, thus extending the life of the consumer. If true, perhaps he is still alive, wandering in the desert (or so this book suggests)! According to the colophon, this book is digitally printed on laid paper in Adobe Jenson Pro with Neue Kabel for captions and Junius Rough for chapter titles. The first half of this edition was printed pre-Covid and the second half was just printed in 2023. Due to paper shortages, this second half has been printed on machine made paper. It includes an original woodcut made by George A. Walker, signed and numbered out of 42, inserted into a pocket on the front free endpaper. The book is bound in grey cloth boards with a black dust jacket titled in white on the spine and front panel. A pattern of grey skulls decorates the jacket. Includes color photographic illustrations that depict fragments from the original Necronomicon, a page from the Book of the Dead, and other historical sources. 37 pages. PRI/031323. Fine.
Toronto: Biting Dog Press, 2003. Hardcover. Number 44of 250 numbered copies, signed by the author, writer of the foreword, and designer and illustrator. It is a humorous and rather irreverent retelling by Jack Ketchum of "an ancient, yet always timely tale." The Panchatantra is an ancient Indian collection of interrelated animal fables in Sanskrit verse and prose. The surviving work is dated to about 200 BC, but the fables are likely much more ancient [Wikipedia]. In this tale, a little mouse unexpectedly falls into the hands of a magician, who transforms the mouse into a young girl who becomes a daughter to him and his wife. It recounts their attempts to find a suitable god for her to marry before they realize that she should be transformed back into a mouse and marry the King of the Mice. With original wood engravings by George Walker that were impressed directly onto handmade Japanese gampi paper from the original wood blocks. The text is printed with Linotype Granjon type on Zephyr Laid paper. Bound in a dark gray full leather portfolio with a tan leather tie that evokes a mouse's tail. A charming book in fine condition. Measures 6.25 x 9 inches. Unpaginated [about 18 pages plus illustrations]. PRI/050922. Fine.
Riverside, CA: Bo Press Miniature Books, (2013). Hardcover. Pat Sweet describes herself as creating illuminated miniature books of curiosity, humor, and delight. She creates both miniature (under 3 inches) and macro-miniature (under 1 inch) books. She also makes miniature pocket globes, astronomical instruments, orreries, tellurions, and occasional oddities. One of 50 copies. Signed by the book artist. "We all know how the story goes: Jonathan Harker leaves the inn at the beginning of 'Dracula', and is dropped off at the crossroads by the coachman, who is afraid to take him any further. But there is another part of the story, one that Stoker's editor (so the story goes) persuaded him to omit. In this version, Harker demands to be taken down a side road that leads to a long-abandoned village, with dire results. This is the story of that dangerous digression: 'Dracula's Guest', published posthumously in 1914. It may have been a part of the novel, or it may not. The narrator is never named, and seems unlike the characterization of Harker in the novel. You can be the judge" (book artist). Designed, printed, and bound by Pat Sweet. Includes 5 illustrations. and endpapers decorated with a flying bat's wing. Bound in black and gold Japanese chiyogami paper with blood red cloth spine. 74 pages. Measures 2 1/16 inches x 1 1/2 inches. ARTB/090523. Fine.
New York: Béatrice Coron, 2022. One of 99 copies. An inventive set of cyber related tarot cards from artist Coron and writer Stern. There are 22 cards plus a card with the user manual that describes how the set can be used. The instructions state: "For MEDITATION, you can study the vanities and follies of humans nature. Please see the 1440 AD OS. For DIVINATION, you must be certified to read the hidden meanings of fate. Please contact a magus, shaman or warlock for instruction and apprenticeship. For all other purposes, such as paradigm shifting, game changing, inventing the future, and causing disruptions of all kinds, we make no guarantees. You AGREE not to hold this tarot deck liable for any surprises." The cards are boldly printed in black, orange, and yellow. Each card has a black skeletal figure that illustrates the term on that card, e.g., online wanderer, hacker, influencer, gamer joystick, cyber security, troll. Each card is 3.3 x 2.16 inches. The deck is housed in a white box that is signed and numbered by Coron. Drawn in Illustrator and printed by Moo. In fine condition. PRI/051622. Fine.
Sebastopol, CA: Deeply Game Publications, 2020. Hardcover. Number 16 of 20 copies. Signed by the book artist. From the preface: In the 19th and early 20th centuries a great many people were fooled into believing that "spirit photographers" were able to pierce death's veil to document the ghosts of lost loved ones. "These photographers, also known as mediums, used double exposures and other tricks to manufacture the supernatural encounters. Their popularity attests to the power of love and loss in people's lives then and now. The hauntings were real, even if the ghosts were not. We are haunted still, and not just by love and loss. This book makes visible some of what bedevils us - psychological demons; social & factual distortions; the force & folly of the culture around us." For this compelling book, the artist produced plates using paint, camera, and ink to create specters - haunting figures - immaterial subjects that comprise both fact and fiction, encompassing both the rational and absurd. The apparent spectral images in the plates are able to be identified using a fold-out guide that provides keys to the bedevilments that haunt each image. Key words (or "bedevilments") include: fake news, extinction, lonliness, police murder, rage, social distance, xenophobia, climate change, demise of democracy, etc.). The relevant key abbreviations are printed on the white page across from each of the images. The painted images in the plates were based on spirit photographs by Ada Deane, William Hope, Edward Wyllie, and others. Bound in dark blue cloth with silver titling to front cover. Letterpress printed using News Gothic and Century Schoolbook fonts designed by Morris Fuller Benton. In fine condition. Measures 8 x 11 inches. [38 pages] ARTISTSB/040623. Fine.
Baltimore: Flying Fox Press, 2017. Paperback. 1 of 25 copies, initialed and numbered by the artist. Linocut of an imaginary serpent-bird printed archivally in dark green ink on tan paper. Printed at PaperBase with Sarah Robbins. Thirty-seven additional copies were printed for the Guild of Book Workers "Bird in Hand" annual collaborative project. Ten percent of each sale will be donated to Bat Conservation International. Size: 8 x 8 inches. PRI/090117. Fine.
Sutton Mandeville, England: Perdix Press, 1978. Softcover. One of 100 copies printed. Seventy were for the fourth exchange of the Society of Private Printers and thirty for private circulation. A charming small collection of 16 verses that were taken from the Oxford Nursery Rhyme Book of 1955, compiled by the nursery rhyme scholars Iona and Peter Opie. The pages are sewn into light cream wrappers with the title and decoration in blue on front cover. Hand set in 10 point Bembo and printed on a Columbian press by Walter Pattridge. In fine condition. 2.5 x 4.5 inches. Unpaginated. PRI/112717. Fine.
Oxford: Shakespeare Head Press, 1933. Hardcover. Number 59 of 370 copies of which 350 were for sale. A splendid edition of Thomas Malory's 15th century retelling of the famous legends of King Arthur and Queen Guinevere, the knights of the Round Table and their quest for the mystical Holy Grail. Malory worked from a late-14th-century French poem, adding some material from other sources, to produce his English prose translation. In 21 books, the stories cover the founding of Arthur’s kingdom and the institution of the Round Table; the various adventures of individual knights; the quest for the Holy Grail; the death of Arthur and the fall of his kingdom. This edition is reprinted for the first time from the only surviving copy of Wynkyn de Worde printing of 1498, now housed at the John Rylands Library in Manchester. Bound in full red morocco with gilt titling to spines and top edges gilt. Minor darkening to spines, rubbing along spine edges, and tips lightly bumped. Front hinges cracked but text block firm. Marbled endpapers with light fraying along fore-edges. Text pages are clean and bright with slight browning to some along fore-edges. With copies of the 22 woodcut illustrations found in the original. A beautiful set in very good to near fine condition. Small quartos. Volume I: 316 pages; Volume II: 73 pages plus colophon. PRI/121222. Near Fine.
Peshastin, Washington: Wiesedruck, 2022. Hardcover. Number 22 of 40 copies signed by the artist. This artist’s book is of the story ‘Baba Yaga’, the Slavic folkloric witch who lives in a house on chicken legs and flies around in a mortar driven by a pestle. The book artist Sarah Horowitz states: "I am melding the imaginary world of one of my favorite childhood stories with my botanical occupation. Plants weave through the etchings, guiding the story with their meanings- invasive, prickly and toxic plants begin the story with discord." This retelling was based on the folktale originally recorded by Aleksandr Afanas’ev and translated by W.R.S. Ralston. Bound in blue illustrated paper covered boards over yellow leather spine titled in black. It is illustrated by Horowitz with hand colored etchings. The text is set in Maiola, inspired by early Czech typography and designed by Veronika Burian of TypeTogether. Graphic designer Joshua Berger (Plazm) contributed to and edited the typography and layout. Arthur Larson of Horton Tank Graphics printed the text on Zerkall paper with polymer plates made by Boxcar Press. The book was bound and boxed by Carolina Veenstra with assistance by David Myhre and Sarah Horowitz. Size: 11.375 x 8 inches. Sarah Horowitz has been awarded multiple grants and has held residencies at several arts centers including ArtBellwald in Switzerland. She taught printmaking at Portland State University for over ten years and was a member of Atelier Mars printmaking workshop during her time in Portland. Her press is named for the Wiese stream that runs through her grandparents backyard near Basel, Switzerland. Much of her work is printed on a Charles Brand Press once owned by Leonard Baskin. Her work is held in private and institutional collections across the U.S. PRI/090123. Fine.