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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
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Art

The Art of American Book Covers - Evangeline Mary Daniell

Published on 12 Dec. 2014
I only know of one cover by Evangeline Mary Daniell, who also went by the signature "Eva," but it is such an exceptional Art Nouveau design that it's likely there are others to be found. Please do post a comment if you know of any. Her monogram EMD is on both the cover and dust jacket of the first printing of The Seven Seas by Rudyard Kipling, the first American edition, published by Appleton in 1896. The monogram was removed from the cover on the 1897 and subsequent editions, but remained on the jacket. Three copies were in the first exhibition of American Decorated Publishers' Bindings 1872-1929 (2005).
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Art

Veronese, His Legacy, Among 17th Century Book Publishers, Art Collectors, & Printmakers

Published on 02 May 2014
This essay is an immersive, illustrated review of the spectacular Veronese show at the Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota, Florida (2012-13); but it also educates readers on Veronese's legacy in the 17th century among book publishers, printmakers, and (mostly) Stuart art connoisseurs. Drawing upon an extended Gallery of Images (21 images, including some fine installation shots, all with extended caption notes by the author), the essay demonstrates the fabled invention, wit, and clever humor of this "Happiest of Painters", as Henry James wrote of Veronese. The essay gives special prominence to the currency of Veronese in the 17th-century book culture and print culture (Images 6,7,14). The author's dedicatees are three prominent book specialists: Robert J. Barry, Jr.; John T. Shawcross; and Peter A. Tasch.
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Art

Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - New York, New York!

Published on 28 Oct. 2013
Like the architect and sculptor Max Bill, Welti (1891–1934) belonged to the artistic new wave which characterised Zurich in the late 1920s, experimenting with abstract art and Dadaism. In 1932, it was Welti who was asked by Wilhelm Wartmann, director of the Zurich Kunsthaus, which was mounting a major Picasso retrospective, to look after the Spaniard during his visit. These early lithographs arose out of a visit Welti made to New York thanks to a 'Swiss Economic Study Tour to America', an initiative begun after the First World War.
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Art

Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - Who is Anne Marie?

Published on 18 July 2012
As personal papers and archival collections are increasingly sought after by librarians and collectors, we have accordingly been conducting a fair bit of original cataloguing of various special collections materials in order to keep up with the demand. I've thus become better at identifying and describing the papers and ephemera of obscure authors and artists, and even a few famous punk rockers unknown only to me; but every now and then I am confronted with anonymous or original materials of considerable interest which I cannot identify, despite my best efforts. Here for example is a hand-painted illustration from the 1930s signed "AM". Can anyone identify this Unknown Woman?
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Art

Publishing the Fine & Applied Arts 1500-2000

Published on 10 July 2012
This new volume of the Publishing Pathways series examines the relationship between the business of print and the practice of art and design across five centuries. It explores the role played by the book trade in the diffusion of artistic and architectural theory, fashion, and practice, and traces the impact of advances in the techniques of binding, color printing, and illustration on the appearance of books. Among the topics discussed are the printed sources for decorative motifs in sixteenth-century churches, the publication history of the works of Andrea Palladio, and the evolution of drawing manuals in seventeenth-century England. Other subjects include the library formed by the architect Sir John Soane, developments in nineteenth-century art publishing, and the role of printed catalogues in documenting the acquisitions made by English collectors of paintings, sculpture, and antiquities.
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Art

Peter Paul Rubens and 17th Century Book Arts

Published on 23 May 2012
Specialists on 17th century books and book arts may enjoy viewing Maureen E. Mulvihill's illustrated exhibition review of the Rubens show at the Ringling Museum, Sarasota, Florida (February 17th-June 3rd, 2012). The review (12 pp, with a Gallery of Images from the installation) is published in Seventeenth-Century News (Spring-Summer, 2012). The Ringling's permanent collection includes five Rubens canvases (the Louvre, two). The show presents selections from Ringling's Rubens collection and many fine prints of the master's work (engravings, woodcuts) on loan from the Royal Museum of Fine Art, Antwerp
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Art

The Book Art of Richard Minsky

Published on 18 March 2011
A new book about the famous book artist: Richard Minsky has been making and remaking artists' books for fifty years. "The Book Art of Richard Minsky", recently published by George Braziller, Inc., shows the best of it. The book itself is a piece of art, bound in a beautifully printed and embossed hardcover and filled with numerous illustrations. It invites readers - and admirers - to explore the sculptural book works of Richard Minsky.
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From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

Article

How Many Ways?

How many ways are there to do this business? Here is my old friend Adrian Connolly of Connolly's Book Shop, Cork City,Ireland ... Adrian once told me he buys his books by the pallet load from a jobber in London. Like bales of rags. He then prices them at € 3 - € 10 and shelves them. All day people wandering through the busy Paul Street square, or shopping at the adjacent Tesco supermarket drift into his shop, spot a book they've never seen before, and purchase it. There are many books on Adrian's shelves that people have never seen before, because most of them expired and disappeared very soon after publication.
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Article

Rare Books in the Press - A Mozart Mystery: Sonata Manuscript Surfaces in Budapest

"For Balazs Mikusi, a young Hungarian musicologist, it was the find of a lifetime. Leafing through folders of unidentified manuscripts at the National Szechenyi Library in Budapest recently, he came across four pages of what looked to him like Mozart's handwriting. As he read through the music, he told Agence France-Presse, he realized that he had stumbled onto Mozart's own score of the Piano Sonata in A, K.331 – one of the best-known Mozart sonatas because of its "Rondo alla Turca" finale. To verify his impression Mr. Mikusi showed a copy of the score to Ulrich Leisinger, the director of the Mozarteum Foundation in Salzburg, and Neal Zaslaw, the editor of the new Köchel catalog of Mozart's works. Both agreed that the writing was Mozart's …" Most spectacular finds of rare books and manuscripts nowadays happen by chance. A Hungarian scholar had such a lucky moment, when he worked in the National Szechenyi Library in Budapest and discovered - a Mozart manuscript.
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Article

Genesis of a Book Artist: Booktryst Interviews Richard Minsky

Richard Minsky is considered to be the most influential book artist of his generation, a pioneer and innovator in the book arts. His critically acclaimed work is found in museums and private collections around the world; he has won many fellowships and awards. Booktryst has written about the breathtaking book art of Richard Minsky. We know that he got a printing press when he was only thirteen years old but his fascination with printing and books began much earlier than that. We recently asked him about his formative years, when he was initially captivated by printing at its most basic.
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Article

Rare Books in the Press - The Secret Life of Libraries

"You can tell a lot about people from the kind of books they steal. Every year, the public library service brings out a new batch of statistics on their most-pilfered novelists – Martina Cole, James Patterson, Jacqueline Wilson, JK Rowling. But in practice, different parts of Britain favour different books. Worksop likes antiques guides and hip-hop biographies. Brent prefers books on accountancy and nursing, or the driving theory test. Swansea gets through a lot of copies of the UK Citizenship Test. In Barnsley, it's Mig welding and tattoos ("I've still no idea what Mig welding is," says Ian Stringer, retired mobile librarian for the area. "The books always got taken before I could find out.") And Marylebone Library in London has achieved a rare equality. Their most stolen items are The Jewish Chronicle, Arabic newspapers and the Bible."
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