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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
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The ABA and the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers

Published on 27 March 2018
The ABA and ILAB look back at a long history. The ABA is relaunching its flagship fair in London this year, the oldest antiquarian book fair in the world, under the auspices of ILAB. This text by the late Anthony Rota, ABA bookseller and ILAB President of Honour, was published in 2008 in the ABA Directory.
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From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

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On top of Vienna – Make the Antiquarian Book Business even more colourful on UNESCO World Book and Copyright Day 2015!

Only 24 hours after the official opening of his new office, Norbert Donhofer invites customers, colleagues and booklovers to an ILAB Pop Up Book Fair on his roof terrace, to enjoy beautiful books, a beautiful view and a glass of wine. And please, bring flowers for the terrace! Plant them on the terrace and make the antiquarian book business even more colourful! Help fill the – symbolic – empty bookcases with – symbolic – book spines by making a donation for the UNESCO literacy projects in South Sudan! A year ago, it was ILAB President Norbert Donhofer's idea that ILAB should take part in the worldwide celebrations on UNESCO World Book and Copyright Day. Now, on 23 April 2015 from noon to 3 pm the ILAB Pop Up Book Fair at Norbert Donhofer Rare Books on top of Vienna will be one of 30 worldwide ILAB events on that day!
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What Future For Rare Books ?

The anticipated death of the book is not a new phenomena. We recall that the book published in 1967 by the Canadian Marshall MacLuhan under the title "The Gutenberg Galaxy" dealt with this matter. Over the years we have seen that the electronic revolution has not really had the effect it had been predicted to have. We may also recall the cover of a magazine which appeared in the '90s and which referred to the answer of Gutenberg to MacLuhan in the form of an arm gesture of extreme vulgarity. Desktop Publishing did not finally kill the published book. It simply vulgarised the publishing proces. For us who are interested in the book as such, we feel that the aesthetics of the book may have suffered but not its productions in terms of quantity.
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Article

Preparing and Carving Meat in the Baroque Period - A New Bibliography by Uwe Frenzel

The Hamburg collector Uwe Frenzel has published a new bibliography about a delightful and delicious field of collecting. His book "Deutschsprachige Tranchierbücher des Barock" provides a detailed and well-founded summary of baroque literature on preparing and carving meat, covering the period between the years 1620 and 1724.
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40th ILAB Congress and 24th ILAB International Antiquarian Book Fair - Switzerland 2012

From the beginning the Swiss antiquarian booksellers have been strongly affiliated to the League. The first ILAB President, William S. Kundig, came from Switzerland. The 5th ILAB Congress was held in Geneva in 1952, the 15th ILAB Congress took place in Basle in 1962, while the ILAB members enjoyed the 25th ILAB Congress and 8th International Antiquarian Book Fair in Zurich in 1978. 34 years later, the ILAB antiquarian booksellers from 32 countries all over the world will return to Switzerland for another important international conference with an exciting programme highlighting the variety of Swiss art, architecture and culture, folklore and industrial history. The 40th ILAB Congress will be followed by the 24th International Antiquarian Book Fair at the Zurich Convention Centre next to the Lake Zurich and the Zurich Fine Art Fair which takes place at the same time. Both events will attract lots of art lovers and bibliophiles. For one week they will change Zurich into the international market place for everything rare, extravagant and beautiful.
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Article

Collecting Rare Books and First Editions: James A. Michener

Michener is best known for his first work of fiction Tales of the South Pacific, a collection on interconnected stories that won the Pulitzer Prize, and which was the basis for his play South Pacific: A Musical Play which also won the prize, and for the film South Pacific.
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The Literature of Collecting by Richard Wendorf

Explorations into the world of books, libraries and the visual arts: Richard Wendorf, Stanford Calderwood Director and Librarian of the Boston Athenæum, provides a groundbreaking investigation of the relationship between the theoretical texts devoted to collecting and the fictional texts that also take collecting as their focus: not just John Fowles's "The Collector", but also Susan Sontag's "The Volcano Lover", Evan Connell's "The Connoisseur", Tibor Fischer's "The Collector Collector", Bruce Chatwin's "Utz", and Ian McEwan's early short story "Solid Geometry." Wendorf shows how the critical arguments posed by Benjamin, Baudrillard, Muensterberger and others play out in these modern literary texts and how, in turn, these fictional works complicate the ways in which we think about what it means to be a collector.
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