Washington DC: Abstract Orange Press, 2016. Number 48 of 300 copies signed and number by the book artist. Lauren Emeritz is a book artist, letterpress printer and graphic artist who founded and runs the Abstract Orange Press. She creates prints and books by hand using a Vandercook press and wood type, including type she designs and carves herself. Lauren holds a BFA in Graphic Design from the University of Delaware. She is the President and Creative Director of Abstract Orange, a graphic design firm in Washington, DC, and a letterpress associate at Pyramid Atlantic Art Center in Hyattsville, Maryland. This is a miniature alphabet book printed with letters that were hand carved in wood by the artist. Each letter is a differently designed capital letter printed in orange. Done in an accordion structure and bound in orange cloth boards with gilt title to spine and front cover. Size: 2 x 1.75 inches. [30 pages.]. Fine.
New York Book Fair 2020
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Washington DC: Abstract Orange Press, 2017. Number 13 of 100 copies signed and numbered by the book artist. Lauren Emeritz is a book artist, letterpress printer and graphic artist who founded and runs the Abstract Orange Press. She creates prints and books by hand using a Vandercook press and wood type, including type she designs and carves herself. Lauren holds a BFA in Graphic Design from the University of Delaware. She is the President and Creative Director of Abstract Orange, a graphic design firm in Washington, DC, and a letterpress associate at Pyramid Atlantic Art Center in Hyattsville, Maryland. A miniature edition of Lauren's full sized book of the same title. Each number is printed from a woodblock hand carved by the artist. Accordion bound in blue cloth covered boards with gilt title to front cover and spine. Rubbing to gilt title on front cover. Size: 2 x 1.75 inches. [24 pages.]. Fine.
Washington DC: Abstract Orange Press, 2016. Number 12 of 100 copies signed and number by the book artist. Lauren Emeritz is a book artist, letterpress printer and graphic artist who founded and runs the Abstract Orange Press. She creates prints and books by hand using a Vandercook press and wood type, including type she designs and carves herself. Lauren holds a BFA in Graphic Design from the University of Delaware. She is the President and Creative Director of Abstract Orange, a graphic design firm in Washington, DC, and a letterpress associate at Pyramid Atlantic Art Center in Hyattsville, Maryland. This is a miniature book of different shapes with each printed in a bright color across a page with the shape in white. Created in an accordion structure and bound in grey cloth with gilt title to spine and front cover. In fine condition. Size: 2 x 1.75 inches.MINIAT/082919. Fine.
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.
Richmond, VA: Mona Lisa Bagby, 2019. Hardcover. Number 1 of 10 copies. In this inventive and interesting work, book artist Lisa Bagby describes the importance of the color red in nature for animal, insect, and plant species. She writes that living creatures rely on color for protection, concealment, and sexual selection. The color red is one of the most distinctive. She offers many examples, from tree frogs to cardinals to red faced monkeys to various plants and fungi. She provides information on such phenomena as aposematism - the use of color by reptiles, amphibians, and fish to warn predators that they are toxic, dangerous, painful to attack, and difficult to eat. Red is not the only color used to display toxicity, but it is one of the more effective ones. The artist states: "The natural world as a companion marks my earliest memories and that status has never wavered. With maturity I came to appreciate the physical, psychological and emotional dynamics of the natural world. As a creative person, I can’t help but notice details of texture, scale and, of course, color in the environment. Color is a significant part of the equation that brings the natural world into our focus and may even persuade us to care. Color sharpens our senses and enjoyment of the environment, whether it is a spectacular sunset or the sight of a cherry tree laden with its fruit. It is part of Nature’s strategy for engaging us. My interest in eco-systems lead me to wanting to better understand how color is used in Nature so I began researching the purpose of red in the environment. The result is my handmade book, The Art of Red in Nature. I learned that Red was not dumped from a paint can over the globe and spread indiscriminately. It has been judiciously allocated across nature and each assignment is useful, if not essential, in the Plant and Animal worlds. Everything in nature, including color, is purposeful and this book explores the story of red in Nature. Not only is color, such as red, designed to support life in eco-systems, but red is also available for human beings to discover, in insects or in minerals, to advance our own creative efforts. The art of red in nature is a wonder indeed." Bagby has creatively illustrated her concertina book with cancelled postage stamps of different species, pen and ink drawings with watercolor applied, linoleum block prints, and cartoons. Additional stamps and descriptions are on the reverse pages. Bound in grey cloth with title label affixed to the front cover. With decorated endpapers and a red and white string closure. In fine condition. Measures 6 x 8 inches. ARTISTSB/072120. Fine.
Mission, BC: Barbarian Press, 2013. Simon Brett. Hardcover. Endgrain Editions Four. Limited to 120 copies in the regular edition. This is the first addition to the Endgrain Editions since 2003, and it is a major return to the series. It is a celebration of the work of Simon Brett documenting his fifty plus years as an engraver. Simon is acknowledged as one of the masters of wood engraving of the past half-century. With 134 engravings printed from the wood, an introduction by the artist, and a chronological catalogue of the more than 1,000 engravings Simon has so far engraved, this is a major work of 250 pages, and is certain to be an important reference on Simon’s work as well as being a splendid book from this important private press. Text printed in Joanna with Fry’s Ornamented for display in green and black on Zerkall Cream laid with engravings printed on Zerkall White Smooth. Bound in quarter green cloth with paper patterned boards and title label to spine. In fine condition. PRI/062014. Fine.
Mission, BC: Barbarian Press, 2019. Hardcover. An edition of 130, of which this is one of 50 copies in the regular edition. According to the printer: "Our fascination with [Wagener's] work is a response to the meticulous attention to detail which imbues all his engravings, combined with a ‘democracy of aesthetic’ which allows both realism and abstraction equal weight. In a Parenthesis review of Wagener’s early book with Peter Koch, Zebra Noise with a Flatted Seventh, Simon Brett said ‘No one else I know of is making such avant-garde grand opera in wood-engraved prints.’" Richard Wagener (1944 - ) is a Californian wood engraver known best for his depictions of nature and animals, often juxtaposed against abstract imagery. A specially commissioned frontispiece, new press device, and patterned papers have been created for this edition. Folio. Bound black and red checkered patterned paper with black cloth spine and red and white title label pasted down to spine. Includes over 100 engravings printed from the original wood plates on Zerkall White Smooth paper. Unpaginated. PRI/122719. Fine.
[Toronto]: Biting Dog Press, 2005. Softcover. Number 64 of 65 copies. Signed and numbered by the printer and artist George Walker. A beautiful edition of one of Poe's most famous poems, illustrated with four striking black and white wood engravings by master engraver Walker. Ms. Hogan-Walker's introduction describes the mysterious circumstances of Poe's death and the contemporary critical and popular reception of this powerful poem. Printed with Garamond type on lovely St. Armand handmade paper. Bound in grey paper covers with title and crow image on front cover. Housed in a handmade hinged wooden box with paper title label and flying crow image on top and George Walker's signature on paper label on bottom of box. In fine condition. Book measures 6.5 x 10 inches; Box is 7.5 x 11 inches. Unpaginated [24 pages]. PRI/090619. Fine.
Riverside, CA: Bo Press Miniature Books, 2010. Hardcover. This is a short story by Prue Batten, an Australian award winning writer of fantasy and historical fiction. Pat Sweet, the book artist writes of Prue: "The Gisborne and Eirie novels are a wonderful source of design inspiration, and their author has generously allowed the Bo Press to produce miniatures based on the world they describe. Prue and I also collaborate on other projects." This story is set in Prue's fantasy world of Eirie and involves love at first sight, betrayal, beautiful costumes, tall dark strangers, and magic." Pat Sweet published this book in three editions, the deluxe, the trade, and this, the fine binding edition. It is bound in a specially printed blush-pink striped paper overlaid with a half binding of antique black lace, with a tiny gold mask on the spine. With six illustrations. In fine condition. Measures 2.25 x 1.50 inches. Unpaginated. [46 pages] ARTISTSBOOK/021518. Fine.
Riverside, CA: Bo Press Miniature Books, 2015. Hardcover. Mary Roberts Rinehart and others of the "Golden Age" of mystery writing became known as the "Had I But Known" school for their use of this useful bit of prolepsis: a foreshadowing device that allows a work-around for the strictures of first-person narration. I've collected examples from all eras of literature and placed them each on their own page, like little jewels of purple prose. ~ "Had I but known that Saacho was his father, I woulf have poured a deluge of my blood to save one drop of his." The Spanish Friar, by John Dryden ~ "Ah,had I but known:: the agony! the deceit! You cannot possibly imagine the trials, the letters, the steps, this strange fantasy exacts. I have seen only a few Academicians, but already my nerves are completely upset." The Letters of Charles Baudelaire to his Mother ~"In a state of suffocating agitation the mistress gasped forth the words, "Had I but known: Freiscutz! Presciosa! I'll turn every soul into the streets!" - The Spectator, Volume 38 Carl Maria von WeberA choice collection ('though I say it myself), printed in Garamond Premier Pro on Monarch Superfine paper, and bound in a Japanese chiyogami paper printed with a stormy sea and turbulent waves, a fitting backdrop for a young woman in a lacy nightgown fleeing a dark castle with a single light in the tower window . . . Size: 2" x 2 1/2" inches. 100 pages, 7 illustrations. Fine.
Riverside, CA: Bo Press Miniature Books, 2018. Hardcover. Limited to 10 copies. "When Duke Albert V of Bavaria commissioned his court painter, Hans Mielich, to make an inventory of the jewels belonging to him and his wife Anna in 1552, he may not have expected the over-the-top manuscript Meilich finally produced two years later. The jewelry wasn't the half of it. The 110 gouche on paper paintings showed the back and front of each piece of jewelry, life-sized, and each was surrounded by a different elaborate frame. The manuscript is a riot of cartouches, strapwork, acanthus, foliage, flowers, grotesques, and caryatids, and yet each jewel shines forth as an individual masterpiece. The book remained in the private ducal and electoral Chamber of Artifacts for almost three centuries—long after the originals of the jewelry depicted had been lost. Only in 1843 was the work presented to the Bavarian State Library by King Ludwig I. I have tried, in my presentation of the Jewel Book, to reproduce in miniature some sense of the outrageous Renaissance ostentation that makes the original such a brilliant and worldly example of wretched excess. My favorite page is the frontispiece of the Duke and Duchess playing chess, as though their real pursuits were intellectual, surrounded by their bored courtiers and a couple of puppies. This miniature copy of the Jewel Book of Anna of Bavaria is limited to ten copies. It is set on OldStyle1 and Palatino Linotype, and printed on Monarch Superfine paper with a Canon Pro-100 inkjet printer. The book is bound in gilded snakeskin with a beaded and embellished front panel of celadon snakeskin. The tri-fold box is bound in a gold on black Indian silkscreened paper with a raised rectangle on the front bound in a textured Japanese metallic gold paper. The interior of the box is lined in a Japanese chiyogami feather print. A small pocket on the front of the box holds a booklet containing information on the Jewel Book and its patrons. Both are of the same gold paper" (Pat Sweet). The book is 2 5/8" x 2" and the box is 3" x 2 3/8" x 1" 136 pages. ARTB/120219. Fine.
Riverside, CA: Bo Press Miniature Books, 2015. 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. This book is from a small open edition signed by the book artist. According to Pat Sweet: "The list makes heartbreaking reading, and I'm not sure which I resent more: the loss of books through active human malevolence, or through stupid human thoughtlessness. Each has its place here, along with forgetfulness, carelessness, accident, embarrassment, and spite. Lord Byron's memoirs being ceremonially burned in John Murray's office fireplace, Sylvia Plath's Double Exposure, which may or may not be in the Ted Hughes archives, frozen until 2022., Clisson et Eugenie, Napoleon's novella, scattered across Europe, and the massive Yongle Encyclopedia, victim of budget cuts. And all the lost books of the Greece, Rome, Timbuktu, the Bible . . ." The book is printed on Mohawk Superfine paper, and bound in the same Mohawk paper (a different shade) and in mottled brown Indian pinto lokta paper. Includes 28 illustrations. 78 pages. Size: 2 3/4 x 1 7/8 inches. ARTB/060619.
Riverside, CA: Bo Press Miniature Books, 2018. Hardcover. According to the book artist: "Ahmed Muhiddin Piri was one of the greatest admirals the Ottoman navy ever produced. He followed his uncle Kemal Reis into the Ottoman navy and quickly rose in what can only be called a swash-buckling career. He took part in every significant battle in the first half of the 16th century. During this, he found time to write one of the most complete and beautiful collections of maps and information ever published: the Kitab-i Bahriye, or The Book of the Sea. The Book of the Sea contained not only extremely accurate maps, but a wealth of detailed information about major ports, bays, gulfs, islands, and coastal cities of the Mediterranean Sea. His maps are filled with detail and color, palm trees and jewel-like cities, ships and rivers, and multi-colored mountain ranges. Even the compass roses show an endless imagination. I have chosen my favorites out of the hundreds that fill the Kitab-i Bahriye, and bound them in an Islamic binding of a brown and metallic copped lizard print with windows of a gold and turquoise paper that resembles the waves of the sea. There is a paper title on the front overlap and on the spine. The maps are printed on Monarch superfine paper." 106 pages. Size: 2 7/8 inches x 2 inches. Fine.
Riverside CA: Bo Press Miniature Books, 2015. Hardcover. Number 29 of 50 copies. Signed and numbered by the book artist. This is a delightful miniature book from the Bo Press. Book artist Pat Sweet is a master of inventive and intricate miniature books, bookish objects, and globes and tellurions. She describes her book as follows: "Three Rats At Sea' is a product of my love of illuminated manuscripts and their creators. As a maker of miniature books, I can't help feeling a kinship with those anonymous artists of the past (and the present). The detail and imagination of these works is something I have always tried to achieve in my own books, to add dense layers of idea and image to the main story; a counterpoint to the melody. I've told the story of my three brave rats in three parts. The first is the introductory text: the story, told in a miniature book. The next is the “real” illuminated manuscript, ' Mures ad Mare (Rats at Sea),' from which I took my story and its world, where rats embark upon voyages of adventure. The third is the pop-up version of the tale told by Sir Bruno’s manuscript and its miniatures, with 8 pop-ups. . Given time, I’m sure I could bake more layers for this little mock-medieval cake, but for now, here’s the story of brave Sir Bruno, his squire Whitby, their servant Pebble on a voyage and adventure upon the sea. The book is bound in turquoise and gold Japanese chiyogami paper, with a metallic gold paper spine and a brass magnetic closure. " The illuminated manuscript is a laid-in booklet. In fine condition. 2 5/8 x 2 1/4". Unpaginated. [14 pages] ARTISTSBOOK/060619. Fine.
Riverside, CA: Bo Press Miniature Books, 2019. Number 4 of 20. At his height, Henry Irving (1838 - 1905) was the greatest actor in the world (and the first to be knighted). He was much more than an actor, he was an actor-producer, which in those days meant that he was responsible for everything, what we would call the artistic director, the director, the production manager, the production designer, and also the lead actor. And the scale of his productions at the Lyceum Theater in London were gorgeous and spectacular, using the latest technology in staging and special effects. Irving led the English theater for over thirty years, and died as he would no doubt have wished, still acting. I came upon his obituary in the Times, and it was a wonderful piece of writing, but also a very good valuation of his art and his place in theatrical history, which isn't so easy to do so near an actor's own time. The old joke used to run that he was an actor who would never play Faust when he could play Mephistopheles. He changed the status of the theater forever, bringing it from the shady demimonde of the 18th century to the height of a recognized and respected form of art. Everyone at the Lyceum called him the Guv'nor, a term of both affection and a well-founded wariness of his perfectionism. If in a former life I had worked as a costumer in his company, I would have been proud to do the same. This miniature book is bound in a gray paper with horizontal slubbed gold lines, and a black and gold marbled paper that wraps around the back to form a small pocket inside filled with theater memoribelia: programs, autographs, advertising posters, and other souvenirs. 2 7/8" x 2", 64 pages. Fine.
Riverside, CA: Bo Press Miniature Books, circa 2015. Open edition. According to the book artist: "No phrase is quite so evocative of the Middle Ages in Europe than 'a knight in shining armor.' This book follows the arming, or as Shakespeare called it, the 'accomplishing', of a knight: from the medieval underwear called braies, through the many padded layers of wool and linen that absorbed the blows of battle and the scraping of the armor, through the overlapping layers of metal plates that, when properly tied to the arming clothes, would protect the knight from anything that could be thrown at him until the introduction of the longbow and firearms." Bound in marbled paper covered boards with black title to spine. In translucent dust jacket with title printed on spine and front panels. This charming book of knightly fashion includes 48 illustrations of a knight, showing each garment worn with a description on the facing page. Each plate is preceded by a translucent overlay of the featured garment, and each plate builds on the next, so you can see the progression of the knight's dressing piece by piece. Also includes an introduction with several illustrations. 114 pages. Size: 2 1/8 x 1 5/8 inches. ARTB/120219. Fine.
London: Smith, Elder,and Co, 1880. Hardcover. First Edition. AN IMPORTANT PRESENTATION COPY, inscribed “Mrs Proctor, with RB’s affectionate regards June 27 ‘80.” Anne Proctor’s husband, the barrister and poet Bryan W. Proctor (who wrote under the pseudonym Barry Cornwall), was the dedicatee of Browning’s poem “Columbe’s Birthday” (1844). The Proctors were among the Brownings’ closest friends. Proctor and John Forster anonymously edited the first selection from Browning’s works in the 1860s. Near fine in original brown cloth with gilt title to spine. Light rubbing to edges and corners. There is browning from a paper clip to the top edge of the first few pages, else the interior is very clean. 147 pages plus 2 pages of advertisements. POE/020309. Near Fine.
London: Macmillan and Co., 1932-1933. Hardcover. Two later volumes bound as one in a beautiful Riviere binding. Alice's Adventures is the one hundred eighty-sixth thousand from 1932. Looking Glass is one hundred and twenty-fourth thousand from 1933. Red morocco with gilt rulings and ribbon garland to front and rear covers. Spine has six compartments with five raised bands with title, author and fleur de lis designs. The front cover has a beautiful embossed illustration with color inlays of Alice and the Dodo bird. On the back is a color illustration of Alice and the Red Queen. Light rubbing to corners and edges. All edges gilt. End pages are red marbled paper. The interior is also in fine condition with John Tenniel's famous illustrations. Full edges gilt. In a gorgeous binding by Riviere & Son. Housed in a modern cream cloth covered clamshell box with paper title label to spine. 183 pages; 211 pages. CHILD/040318. Fine.
Easthampton, MA: Cheloniidae Press and Wonder Books Editions, 2019. Letter K of 26 lettered copies, lettered and signed by the book artist and Roberts of Wonder Books Editions. This portfolio is an impressive new production from Alan James Robinson and his Cheloniidae Press. The press has issued many fine limited edition books since its founding in 1979 by master printer and artist Robinson. Now he and Roberts and letterpress printer Arthur Larson have collaborated to create this homage to great books and authors that have influenced and changed lives. The portfolio has a suite of letterpress broadsides each beginning with the phrase "If there were no books." They honor Hound of the Baskervilles, Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn, Unicorns, Moby Dick, Headless Horseman, Nevermore, Black Cat, Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Ophelia, Alice in Wonderland, Call of the Wild, and Jabberwocky. There are one hundred broadsides to be sold individually and an additional thirty available in portfolios, lettered A-Z , with four Artist Proofs. Each portfolio has twelve broadsides from original pen and ink drawings by Robinson. He has lettered and signed each one. This special set also includes copies of two of the illustrations that are hand watercolored by the artist - Alice in Wonderland and Jabberwocky. There is an additional suite of twelve different illustrations for these works that will only appear in print in these thirty portfolios. The type and illustrations are printed from polymer plates on Cranes Lettra paper. The two suites are each in a stiff paper folder housed in a tan linen portfolio and housed in a linen clamshell box with a paper title label affixed to front cover. They are accompanied by a title page and colophon. In fine condition. Measures 11 x 14 inches. PRI/121219. Fine.
Toronto: Cheshire Cat Press, 2019. Hardcover. Number 13 of 42 copies. Signed by Walker, Burstein, and printer Andy Malcolm. Quarto. This is the latest version of The Hunting of the Snark to be published by the Cheshire Press. Carroll's famous nonsense poem has been subject to numerous interpretations over time. In this truly snarky edition, Walker has chosen President Donald Trump and his White House cabinet and advisors for his 21st century lineup of the characters. He writes: "...I think they match up nicely to to the crew of the ship. When you read the poem and think of Trump's cabinet, it's hard not to see the parallels. The political arena in the USA could be described as nonsense, which is exactly the type of poem [this] is. The plot follows a crew of ten unqualified professionals trying to hunt the Snark with a blank map." Thus such familiar names as Scaramucci, Sessions, Priebus, Pence, Mnuchin, Bannon, Sanders and Trump himself appear in parts that reflect their real-life attributes and roles. Bound in grey textured cloth with leather title label to front cover and gilt title to spine. Printed in New Caledonia type on Velin BFK Rives paper. With thirteen engravings by Walker and "The Snark Map" in a sleeve affixed to front pastedown. Housed in slipcase covered in same cloth as book with gilt titling to cover and spine. In fine condition. 71 pages. PRI/011520. Fine.
Martinez, CA: Lucy Childs, 2020. Cloth. A unique embroidered artists’ book with a murder mystery theme. Lucy’s exquisite embroidered books are inspired by her “exploration of the history, craft, and culture of early American and British sewing samplers, made mostly by young girls to learn the practical craft of sewing but also to learn letters and spelling. Many old and antique samplers included text or images in memory of family members who had died.” Lucy’s beautiful and painstakingly created books are a fitting tribute to and continuation of the craft she honors. Her previous unique books can be found in several artists’ book collections. Although this book is not precisely a memorial to Louisa, it does document her mysterious death. The book is held in a grey wool folded covering with a poignant scene of a cross in the ground under a willow tree on its top. The interior folds of the grey covering are of a knife dripping blood on one side and a peaceful lake on the other. The grey wool covering opens to the folds of the interior panels. They are covered in pale blue cloths with an elaborate letter "L" on one side and a cross on the other. The interior panels are meticulous and intricate embroidered tableaux of what may have happened to Louisa. The first panel asks "Whatever Happened to Louisa." The words are framed with flowers and decorative stitching. The second panel has a garden scene with what appears to be two knives flying through the air. The third panel has two cross shapes: the first is a tatted insert and the second includes an embroidered floor plan of a home interior with ominous foot prints leading upstairs to a bedroom. The fourth inner panel is embroidered with a lake scene that has a mysterious object near one shore. Is it a boat or is it a coffin? The words “And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest” are stitched along the lake’s other bank. The hand embroidery throughout uses cotton, silk, rayon, and polyester threads of various colors. Lucy's gorgeous artist's book is housed in a grey cloth box with a stitched blue label of a boat and a cross. The folded book measures 3.5 x 4.5 inches. it unfolds to 3.5 x 18.25 inches. The grey wool covering is 4 x 5 inches folded and 4.5 x 19 inches unfolded.The box is 4.75 x 6 x 2 inches. In fine condition. ARTISTSBOOK/042320. Fine.
London: T. Unwin Fisher, 1898. Hardcover. First English edition of Conrad's first collection of short stories, published in both America and England in 1898. Author's presentation copy, inscribed “For J. B. Pinker, Joseph Conrad.” The book marks the first stage of Conrad learning to write for popular magazines: "in that book I come nearer to the popular notion of tale-telling than in any previous work of mine" (writing to Unwin, Collected Letters, II., p.48). Pinker was one of the first literary agents in London, and became one of the most important agents of the twentieth century, with such clients as H.G. Wells, Stephen Crane, Henry James, and Ford Madox Ford. Pinker was “superbly attuned to the changing economic climate of the 1890s publishing market and served the interests of several 'difficult' writers with a skillful blend of shrewdness, tact, generosity, and long-suffering” (Knowles and Moore). This could not have been better demonstrated than with his relationship with Conrad, in which the agent was required to play many roles: friend, banker, father-figure and general factotum. Pinker could see Conrad's potential, but in many ways the author was ill-placed to survive the cutthroat market of the time, committed as he was “to a form of experimental novel, the unpredictable gestation of which involved an enormous amount of energy, time, and living costs” (op.cit.) As Conrad later gratefully acknowledged, Pinker believed in him and backed him for the long term, bankrolling him through the lean years when he had yet to be a commercial success, in the hope of future payments and royalties. Conrad was forced to split himself between his long serious projects like Nostromo and Under Western Eyes and more commercial journalistic material. Tensions were high between author and agent in these years between 1904 and 1910, with Pinker being asked for larger and larger advances to fund medical costs, household bills and overseas trips. The agent's requests for itemization and justification were resented by Conrad, and he sometimes resisted his agent's attempts to link payments to fixed amounts of delivered copy. In December 1909 Pinker's patience finally snapped after the author had been working on Under Western Eyes for two years and then broke off, against his agent's wishes, to write for the English Review. Pinker threatened to cut off all funds; his author retaliated by threatening to throw the manuscript into the fire. After an explosive row the two did not speak for two years. After the dramatic upturn in Conrad's popularity and finances after 1914 the author could finally begin to settle his debts, and the two men resumed their relationship, meeting weekly, spending weekends at each other's homes, and even collaborating on a screenplay. Conrad later wrote: “those books which, people say, are an asset of English Literature owe their existence to Mr. Pinker as much as to me. For 15 years of my writing life he has seen me through periods of unproductiveness[,] through illnesses[,] through all sorts of troubles...” (Collected Letters, V, p.619). Conrad was deeply affected by his agent's sudden death in 1922. Bound in original green cloth with light bumping to corners. Offsetting to free front endpaper not affecting the legibility of inscription. Text block has pulled away from front hinge but still tight although some interior gutters visible. Library stamp on rear pastedown, offsetting and piece of rear free endpaper torn away. Housed in a green cloth slipcase. With bookplate of book collector Stanley J. Seeger. Very good condition despite noted flaws. 297 pages. LIT/011116. Very Good.
(New York): [printed for author], (1893). Hardcover. FIRST EDITION, SCARCE. A Milestone in the history of American Literature. Crane's first novel. One of only about 35 known copies. Crane had 1,100 copies printed but only two were sold through Bretano's. Bound in paper wrappers, which have been expertly restored. The original front wrapper has been backed and the missing areas have been filled in. The spine and rear wrapper are modern, but have colored to match the original front wrapper. The edges of the first few pages are chipped and several corners are clipped. There are a few spots of foxing to the interior, but otherwise it remains very clean. Housed in a modern clamshell box with rounded leather spine titled in gilt. 163 pages. LIT/030614. Very Good.
Maureen Cummins, 2016. Hardcover. Number 34 of 40 copies. Signed the artist. In this powerful work, noted book artist Maureen Cummins investigates the dark side of the history of psychosurgery, as exemplified by the career of Doctor Walter Freeman (1895-1972), a professor of neurology who became known as the father of lobotomy by single-handedly popularizing the pre-frontal lobotomy in America. Although he had no formal training in either surgery or psychology, Freeman modified the traditional procedure for lobotomies by driving ice picks through his patients’ eye sockets rather than drilling into the skull to sever nerve connections in the prefrontal cortex to treat mental illness. Despite his championing of his procedure he admitted that lobotomies often created childlike behavior or a vegetative state in patients. Hundreds of patients died. The controversial procedure also raised numerous questions about patients’ rights, the abuse of institutional power, and the disproportionate targeting of women. Of the more than 3000 patients that Freeman operated on, two-thirds were women. Cummins uses physical rape as an analogy for neurological penetration, a form of sexualized violence that was perpetuated for decades in the name of medical progress. She visualizes this by a series of laser cut holes that bore through each page, becoming smaller page by page.The holes penetrate reproduced images of lobotomy patients’ heads and on the last page the title “The Rapist” becomes “Therapist?” The images of women are from 'before-and-after” photos used in Freeman’s textbook, which are re-contextualized, with lines of typography serving as blindfolds, reclaiming for these women a measure of dignity, humanity, and anonymity. The pages of the book are laser-cut aluminum with silkscreen-printed text and imagery. The covers are also laser-cut aluminum with a large hole that reveals the subsequent holes and "The" and "rapist" on either side of the cover's hole. The pages are attached to the cover by two ring binders. Housed in an aluminum box with a metal title label affixed to the top. In fine condition. 16 pages. 24” x 9” x 1” open 12” x 9” x 1 closed. ARTISTSB/100419. Fine.
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.