[Ipswich, England]: 1905-06. A unique and charming autograph book of a young college woman, filled with handwritten drawings, quotes from various writers and good wishes from friends and acquaintances at the college. The initials N.T.C. are on many of the pages. It is unclear whether these are the initials of the album's owner or a reference to the school they all attend. References to Ipswich and and Burton on Trent place the book as English. The most delightful feature of the autograph book are the 32 illustrations interspersed throughout. There are 12 watercolors, 13 pen and ink drawings, and 6 pencil sketches. They include men and women, flowers, animals, and scenery. The quality of the illustrations varies from basic and naive through competent to a few that are quite accomplished. Bound in brown leather with the word Album in gilt to front cover. Bumping and chipping, with the backstrip still attached but in fairly poor shape. All edges gilt. A few pages have become loose but the book is otherwise a lovely example. Measures 5 x 8 inches. [44 pages]. HANDWRITTEN/081120. / Very Good.
Handwritten Books/ Journals
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New York: Béatrice Coron, 2014. Paperback. Number 2 of 6 copies. This poignant yet also exuberant book is a collaboration by well known book artist Béatrice Coron with painter, Laura James, and poet, Tiffany Osedra Miller. Coron describes her book work: "For more than 20 years I have been exploring visual storytelling in artist books, paper cutting and public art. Collecting memories from individuals and communities, I stage narrative allegories in silhouette to create a dialogue with the viewer in playful fantasies. These visual chronicles record archetypal stories that transcend time and space. I have been fascinated by the relation of people to their space and the sense of belonging. Using papercutting where everything is cut from a single piece of Tyvek, the profusion of individual stories makes a coherent whole world." [From her website]. In this accordion book, Coron’s evocative papercuts are married to Laura James’s colorful painted pages, with Miller’s poignant poem of hopes for a better future handwritten across the pages in black ink. Miller’s poem addresses the hopes, hardships, and disappointments of immigrant families during their journey to new lands. Coron and James’s illustrations of a barren land, a dying grandmother, a lone rooster, and a severed hand in the desert paint a disturbing backdrop for this quest to a better life. The covers are black with a white and red title label to the front and colophon on rear cover. The backs of the pages are painted gold. Hand-cut and painted on Arches paper with hand-written text. Housed in a yellow cloth covered book case. Size: 66 x 6 inches when open. 5 x 5.5 inches when closed. Unpaginated [10 pages] ARTB/081921. Fine.
New Bedford, MA: 1928-1930. A charming and unique full scrapbook assembled and kept by Teddy Galligan, a high school student in New Bedford, of her life and experiences while in school. She kept everything from programs for cultural events, holiday cards, postcards, newspaper clippings, and much more. She was also a talented amateur artist and her drawings of flappers and their young men appear on several pages. There are also a few ephemeral items such as ribbons and a small pouch. She provided detailed information about the engagement and shower for the first in her circle to be engaged, included a two page hand drawn depiction of the shower attendees, the table decorations, and the menu. A few tears here and there, occasional offsetting, and perhaps an item removed from a few pages. Several pages have been removed, likely by the creator - because as we all remember, boyfriends come and go as do friendships. This is a fun and engaging account of high school life in the late 1920s. Very good condition. EPHEM/102119. Very Good.
Neustadt, Germany: circa 1988. Hardcover. Glossy blue paper covered boards with gilt title "Poesie" to front cover. The interior is filled with songs, advice, and well wishes for a baby, Mandana - from various friends. Text is mostly in German with several entries in English. Most entries are dated and range from 1988 to 1991. Includes pasted down photographs and cards. One entry reads "Dear Mandana, However they talk, whatever they say, Look straight at the task without dismay, and if you can do it, do it today! Fur Erinnerung an Deine Lehoerin. Marianne Lermann. Neustadt, im November 1988." Light soiling to covers, but clean overall. 6.5 x 6.5 inches. HAND/040419. Very Good.