Category Archives: fine press editions

fine press editions

Yellow Barn Press

The Graphic Arts Collection has substantial holdings of twentieth-century fine press editions but we recently filled in some gaps in our collection of Yellow Barn Press (YBP) books with wood engravings by John DePol (1913-2004). These represent a collaboration between DePol and YBP printer Neil Shaver that lasted from 1983 until the DePol’s death in 2004.

Here’s a biographical note from the records of the YBP, held at the University of Iowa Libraries. “In 1966, Shaver and his wife Fran moved to rural Iowa, outside of Council Bluffs. On the property was a barn, which Shaver and Fran cleaned up and turned into his printing studio. Fran is credited with coming with the name Yellow Barn Press. In 1980, Shaver sold his grocery business and retired, turning his printing avocation into his vocation. He printed about two books a year. The first books were on the Washington press, but after his sixth book, he began printing his books on a Vandercook, which is easier for one person to operate.

In 1983, he took a course from John Anderson at Fairleigh Dickinson University in New Jersey, and he and Anderson communicated from that point on until Anderson died in 1997. One of Shaver’s books about printing is about Anderson’s Pickering Press. . . Due to failing eyesight, Shaver closed the press in 2005, having brought out over thirty books.”

Photograph posted with the records of the Yellow Barn Press at the University of Iowa Library.

Here are the titles we’ve been able to acquire and a few images:
1. American Iron Hand Presses, #40/180, signed by Steve Saxe.
2. Ben Franklin on Lead Hazards, inscribed & dated by John.
3. Does Literature Exist, #9/175. John’s copy with his bookplate, inscription from Neil Shaver at Yellow Barn Press, signed twice by John. A second bookplate is also on the inside front cover with a different DePol engraving. With prospectus, ordering postcard, & typed note initialed by John.
4. Dress, by Eric Gill. #7/200, signed by John.
5. Goudy Memoir, YBP bookplate & Emerson G. Wulling’s bookplate too, with EGW’s traditional penciled notes on ffep, prospectus laid in.
6. Not Barn Again, inscribed & dated by John.
7. John Anderson & The Pickering Press, #102/150, inscribed & dated by John.
8. Liberty Bell on the K-G Press, #205/215, inscribed & dated by John.
9. Travels with Pat, with handwritten presentation note on his 1994 birthday laid in.




See also John J. Walsdorf, The Yellow Barn Press: a history and bibliography (Council Bluffs, Ia.: Yellow Barn Press, 2001). Graphic Arts Collection (GAX) Oversize 2004-0798Q

Arcadio Díaz Quiñones


On October 28, 2016, Arcadio Díaz Quiñones, emeritus professor of Spanish and Portuguese Languages, and former director of the Program in Latin American Studies at Princeton University, was given the distinction of Humanist of the Year 2016 by the Puerto Rican Foundation of the Humanities (FPH). Granted annually, this award recognizes Puerto Ricans who, through their life and work, have made significant contributions to the diffusion of humanistic knowledge. The ceremony took place at the Jesús María Sanromá Theater of the Conservatory of Music of Puerto Rico, in Miramar.

In addition, the FPH published a limited edition book with two essays by Dr. Díaz Quiñones, entitled Sobre principios y finales or About Beginnings and Endings. The Graphic Arts Collection is proud to have acquired copy 15 from the edition of 250.

 

 

 

 

The FPH is a non-profit organization affiliated with the National Endowment for the Humanities and dedicated to exalting humanistic values through the development of programs and activities that stimulate the analysis and dissemination of knowledge related to the Puerto Rican humanistic experience, educational innovation, and social history.

http://www.fphpr.org/es/content/humanista-del-a%C3%B1o-2016

 

 

Arcadio Díaz Quiñones, Sobre principios y finales [About Beginnings and Endings] (Naguabo, Puerto Rico: Puerto Rican Foundation of the Humanities, 2016). Copy 15 of 250. Graphic Arts Collection GAX 2017- in process

 

Song of Myself

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8,992 words from Walt Whitman’s “Song of Myself” spiral outward from a fountain in New York’s newly dedicated AIDS Memorial. Located in St. Vincent’s Triangle, across from the former site of St. Vincent’s Hospital where an AIDS ward opened in 1984, the memorial was designed by Jenny Holzer and will be completed before the end of 2016. http://nycaidsmemorial.org/

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The first Leaves of Grass was put on sale in at least two stores, one in New York and another in Brooklyn, in late June of 1855. Printed in the shop of Andrew Rome of Brooklyn (where Andrew was assisted by his younger brother Tom), the quarto-size volume was designed and published by Whitman himself, who is also believed to have set the type for a few of its 95 pages. As William White has shown, 795 copies were printed in all, 599 of which were bound in cloth with varying degrees of gilt, the rest of them in paper or boards. A recent census of extant copies of the first edition reveals that nearly 200 copies survive today. Ivan Marki, “Leaves of Grass, 1855 edition,” in J.R. LeMaster and Donald D. Kummings, eds., Walt Whitman: An Encyclopedia (New York: Garland Publishing, 1998).

Princeton University Library has three copies of Whitman’s 1855 edition. Seen here: Walt Whitman (1819-1892), Leaves of Grass (Brooklyn, N.Y.: [Walt Whitman]; [Brooklyn: Rome Bros], 1855). Rare Books (Ex) Behrman American no. 226q.
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SONG OF MYSELF.

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I CELEBRATE myself, and sing myself,
And what I assume you shall assume,
For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you.

I loafe and invite my soul,
I lean and loafe at my ease observing a spear of summer grass.

My tongue, every atom of my blood, form’d from this soil, this air,
Born here of parents born here from parents the same, and their parents the same,
I, now thirty-seven years old in perfect health begin,
Hoping to cease not till death.

Creeds and schools in abeyance,
Retiring back a while sufficed at what they are, but never forgotten,
I harbor for good or bad, I permit to speak at every hazard,
Nature without check with original energy.

Read the entire poem: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems-and-poets/poems/detail/45477

Peregrinations of French Types

argetsingerMark Argetsinger, Peregrinations of French Types in the Sixteenth Century: Printing of Robert Bellarmine’s ‘Disputationes’ in Southern Germany. A Bibliographical Analysis of the Second Ingolstadt Edition Printed by David Sartorius, with Leaves Incorporated from Volume II, ‘De sacramentis’ 1591 (Union Springs, New York: Press of Robert LaMascolo, 2016). Copy 183 of 200. Graphic Arts Collection 2016- in process

 

Nicolas Barker once wrote, “Mark Argetsinger is one of the very few typographical book designers in the world. That is, he thinks in terms of type, not graphical layout. He handles printers’ flowers with the bravura and assurance of Frederic Warde, and can achieve that rarity, optically spaced capitals, with apparent ease….” And so, when Argetsinger writes about typography and book design, it is important that we read and listen.

 

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The Graphic Arts Collection is fortunate to have acquired one of Argetsinger’s limited edition Peregrinations of French Types in the Sixteenth Century. The foreword, written by Herbert H. Johnson, begins “This splendid book–the culmination of a long-time wish of mine to publish a series of ‘Leaf Books’ dedicated to the works of famous printers and type designers–has its genesis during my undergraduate days at the Rochester Institute of Technology….” Limited to 200 numbered copies, each book includes two original leaves from Disputationes, printed in 1591.

For more on the LoMascolo Press, see: https://sk-sk.facebook.com/rlpress/. For more on Argetsinger, see: http://argetsingerbooks.com/

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“Les minutes de sable mémorial”

jarry4Alfred Jarry (1873-1907), Les minutes de sable mémorial ([Paris]: Editio[n] du Mercure de Fra[n]ce, C. Renaudie, 1894). One of 216 copies printed. Seven woodcuts carved and printed by Jarry, two printed from earlier woodblocks. Graphic Arts Collection GAX 2016- in process.

 

Alfred Jarry published his first book of prints and poems, Les minutes de sable mémorial in September 1894 at the age of twenty-one. He paid the cost himself working with the printers at Mercure de France where many Symbolists were publishing.

The design of the volume, repeated the following year in his second book César antichrist, includes astonishingly modern typography, which predates that of Un Coup de Dés Jamais N’Abolira Le Hasard (A Throw of the Dice will Never Abolish Chance) by Stéphane Mallarmé in 1897. Jarry’s book should be considered an early artists’ book although it never appears in such studies
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According to Keith Beaumont, “…the prestigious and highly influential Echo de Paris had held a monthly literary competition which offered to aspiring young writers the prospect of four valuable and much coveted prizes of 100 francs each … and a guarantee of publication in the paper’s weekly illustrated literary supplement. Between February and August 1893, Jarry was to win outright or to share five such prizes, with poems or prose texts, which would be republished the following year in his first book, Les Minutes de sable mémorial.” (Keith Beaumont, Alfred Jarry. St. Martin’s Press, 1984)

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Jarry liked multiple meanings for a single text, exemplified in his title: Les minutes de sable mémorial. Beaumont notes, “Sable refers both to the sand of the sablier or hourglass, which marks the passage of time, and which recurs in the title of the last poem in the volume, and to the term for the colour black in heraldry; and memorial has the meaning of both ‘in memory of’ and ‘of the memory’. The title as a whole therefore refers simultaneously to the passage of time whose ‘minutes’ are here recorded; to the movement of memory; and to the committal to paper of a series of moments of creative activity (‘sable’ referring to the ink-blackened pages) which memory has inspired or, alternatively and simultaneously, which are reproduced here as a ‘memorial’.”

 

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In November 1894, Jarry cut his long hair and enlisted in the 101st Infantry Regiment in Laval.
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See also Alfred Jarry (1873-1907), Cesar antechrjst ([Paris]: Mercure de France, 1895). One of 7 large-paper copies on vergé Ingres de carnation. Rare Books (Ex) 3260.33.323 1895 [below]jarry

 

Les sept péchés mortels

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hamilton-deadly-sinsEverett Hamilton, Les sept péchés mortels. Observes et graves sur bois dans la ville de Cagnes (Paris: Gilbert Rougeaux, 1936). Copy 34 of 100. Graphic Arts Collection GAX 2016- in process.

Rare Books and Special Collections has many different versions of Sept péchés capitaux or Seven Deadly Sins or Siete pecados capitals or Sieben tödliche Sünden. This is a new addition to the group.

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Almost nothing has been recorded about the life of the American artist Everett Hamilton. As a young man, Hamilton left the United States in 1923 to live and study painting in Paris. Six years later, he returned and received his first one-man show of watercolors and linocuts at Montross Galleries on Fifth Avenue.

“The subject matter his pictures are reminiscent of the work of all the other painters who frequent the popular painting resorts of France. There the similarity ends, in that the artist has remained curiously free from popular trends of style and points of view. A direct transcription of visual reality and an emphasis on structure which, when the human figure is introduced, becomes definitely plastic, [and] gives his work its distinctive style.” Brooklyn Daily Eagle, December 15, 1929

By 1932, Hamilton was included in an American watercolors exhibition assembled by the College Art Association and held at the Worcester Art Museum, in Worcester, Massachusetts. His three paintings hung side-by-side with the work of Milton Avery, Charles Burchfield, Stuart Davis, and Wanda Gag, among others.

This was Hamilton’s last American show and it seems likely that the artist moved back to the South of France, where he observed and engraved The Seven Mortal Sins in the town of Cagnes.

 

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Luis Camnitzer illustrates Martin Buber

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buber1Luis Camnitzer and Martin Buber (1878-1965), Luis Camnitzer Illustrates Martin Buber (New York: JMB Publishers Ltd, 1970). 10 woodcuts printed at The New York Graphic Workshop. Graphic Arts Collection GAX 2016- in process.

 

The Graphic Arts Collection is fortunate to have acquired Luis Camnitzer Illustrates Martin Buber, copy J, one of ten copies lettered A-J, each containing one original drawing by the artist and one double suite containing one suite of woodblock prints on Arches paper and one suite of woodblock prints on Natsume paper.

The portfolio includes ten folktales from the Hasidic Jewish tradition in Eastern Europe, selected by Camnitzer from the early masters section of Buber’s Die chassidischen Bücher as translated by Olga Marx. They are paired with ten woodcuts by Camnitzer titled: The Tap at the Window; The Helpful Mountain; The Deaf Man; How We Should Learn; Failure; Blessing of the Moon; To Say Torah and To Be Torah; The Mountain; The Bird Nest; and The Strong Thief.

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“In 1964 after moving to New York from his native Uruguay, Camnitzer co-founded The New York Graphic Workshop, along with fellow artists, Argentine Liliana Porter and Venezuelan Guillermo Castillo (1941–1999). For six years until 1970, they examined the conceptual meaning behind printmaking, and sought to test and expand the definition of the medium. In 1964 Camnitzer wrote a manifesto on printmaking that was later adopted by the group as a statement of intent. In this text Camnitzer argues that printmaking should not restrict but rather amplify the possibilities of an artist to generate conceptually rich ideas through strong images.”—Alexander Gray Associates

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See also: The New York Graphic Workshop, 1964-1970, edited by Gabriel Pérez-Barreiro, Ursula Davila-Villa, Gina McDaniel Tarver ([Austin, Tex.]: Blanton Museum of Art, 2009). Marquand Library (SA) NE492.C63 N49 2009

Martin Buber (1878-1965), Die chassidischen Bücher (Berlin: Schocken, [1927]). Published in 1949 under title: Die Erzählungen der Chassidim. Recap BM198 .B778 1927

Emily Preston, Bookbinder and Spiritualist

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The artisan bindings of Emily Preston (1867-195?) were already being reviewed in the November 22, 1901 issue of the Brooklyn Eagle, barely a year after she opened a studio in New York City. Born in Chicago, Preston was recently returned from 15 years in Europe where she studied bookbinding in Switzerland, London, and France.

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The New York Sun ran a long profile of Preston that was reprinted on January 3, 1902, in the Boston Evening Transcript under the heading “Among the Bookbinders, Some Studies with Masters of the Craft.” It mentions that her first studio was at 127 East 23rd Street, but within a few years Preston opened a bindery with Helen Haskell (Noyes, 1864-1940) in the luxury apartment building known as the St. George at 223 East 17th Street. Each floor at the St. George had only two vast apartments with an elevator between them (later converted to 44 single apartments).

According to ancestry documents, she and Haskell lived and traveled together until Helen’s death in 1940, with the exception of a few years when Helen was married to Charles William Noyes (1854-1921). By the 1920 census, Charles is renting a room on his own.

Both Preston and Haskell studied bookbinding at the Hammersmith shop of T.J. Cobden-Sanderson (1840-1922), although at different times. “I didn’t plunge into the Dove’s Bindery at the start,” Preston told the New York Sun reporter. “I began work in Vevay, Switzerland. I hadn’t the faintest idea of making bookbinding a profession, you know. I only took it up to keep from being bored.”

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After a few weeks learning the Swiss technique, Preston went on to London and was surprised by Cobden-Sanderson’s insistence that she stay at least one year. But she agreed, paying 500 guineas for tuition. Although there was room for up to three students each year, Preston was alone during her first six month.

“I stayed at the bindery longer than any of the other pupils,” she commented. “At the end of the year I fitted up a studio over the Dove’s Press, which was just being installed [1893], and spent six months there, having special evening lessons from the bindery teachers.”
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By 1900, Preston was in New York City, helping to establish an Arts and Crafts Society (Guild of Arts and Crafts) based on the London organization. She agreed to serve as its first president. Several years later, the Society’s division of bookworkers met in Preston’s apartment and voted to form a separate, national Guild of Bookworkers.preston3-2

In 1916, both Preston and Noyes were introduced to spiritualism after reading Sir Oliver Lodge’s Raymond, or Life and Death (New York: G.H. Doran, 1916). [Firestone BL1261 .L82 1916]. By 1920, they were practicing spiritualists, communicating with dead relatives through automatic writing. Their book, The Voice from Space: to Emily Preston and Helen Haskell Noyes (New York: Irving Press, 1920), transcribes seven lessons received from “a master,” including text unusually close to Helen’s father’s theories on the benefits of fasting and Emily’s theories on female independence.

Here is a bit of Preston’s introduction:
preston7-2Preston continued to bind books by hand into her 70s, although none are identified in OCLC or at Princeton.


The Medium Exposed? Or, a Modern Spiritualistic Séance (1906) | BFI.

Jean-Frédéric Schall, 18th-century Kardashian

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John Milton (1608-1674), Le Paradis perdu, poëme par Milton; édition en anglais et en français. Ornée de douze estampes imprimées en couleur d’après les tableaux de M. Schall (Paris: André Defer de Maisonneuve, rue du Foin S. Jacques, no. 11, 1792). 12 stipple engravings, printed à la poupée. Graphic Arts Collection Oversize PR3561.F5 D8 1792q

The twelve plates, one each for the twelve books, are after paintings by Jean-Frédéric Schall (1752-1825) [below], which were after previous Milton designs by Francis Hayman (ca. 1708-1776). The plates were engraved by Alexandre L. Clément; Nicolas Colibert; Mme de Monchy; and Jean-Baptiste Gautier.
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Jean-Frédéric_Schall_(1752-1825)Jean-Frédéric Schall studied at the Ecole Publique de Dessin in Strasbourg and the Académie Royale in Paris, but never became a member. “After leaving the school, Schall immediately found himself launched into the world of frivolous and romantic high society which enlivened Paris during the Ancien Régime. It was a world in which actresses from the Comédie Française, dancers and fashionable women rubbed shoulders with the financiers and princes of whom they were the mistresses. Schall quickly became the beloved painter of this world.” —Benezit Dictionary of Artists

An example of the lively circles in which Schall traveled is faithfully depicted in Louis Léopold Boilly’s painting Meeting of Artists in Isabey’s Studio (1798). Schall stands near the center of this scene [below]. The painting is currently hanging in Musée du Louvre in Paris.

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Venice

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veniceFine press book collectors around the world have been waiting many months for the new volume being produced at Whittington Press. This week, online comments have been springing up throughout social media sites as individuals finally received and opened their mail containing Venice.

 

John Craig, Venice; with 35 of his wood engravings (Risbury, Herefordshire: Whittington Press, 2016). Copy 44 of 150 in Pirate leather. Graphic Arts Collection (GAX) in process

John Randle notes, “The 80 wood-engravings, and some linocuts, some with colour, have made the book a printer’s challenge. John Craig’s use of white space has, as with Britten’s Aldeburgh (2000) and The Locks of the Oxford Canal (1985), been critical, and the asymmetric imposition of type and images is based upon his precise layouts. The resulting double-page spreads can be seen almost as a series of stage sets, introducing us to the often undiscovered delights of a city which he has visited regularly for the past twenty years.

The French-fold binding style is a new departure for us. The pages are left folded at the top edge, enabling us to use a lightweight Zerkall mould-made paper, specially hot-pressed to give an extra sheen for the engravings, and allowing us to print throughout on the smooth side of the paper only.”

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The book begins: “This collection of engraved illustrations is by, and for, a Venice amateur. I offer an apology; so much has been produced on the subject that one is wary of taking up yet more space on the shelf . . . and yet . . . there is some impulse that drives people to express, explain, pin down something that no other city possesses. With this in mind – (as Robert Graves puts it) ‘one still stands ready, with a boy’s presumption,/ To court the queen in her high silk pavilion’.

There is (or was) in Venice a bookshop as big as a small house that sells only ‘Venice’ books in which all the history, architecture, paintings, sculpture and topography are most expertly covered by the best authors—living and dead—the competition is enormous. For this reason I have chosen to ignore the better known set pieces and illustrated as an innocent holiday maker wandering—open mouthed—without plan or guide through the small and less known parts of the city.”

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