Fine Press News 2012

{Ed. Note: For 2014 News, see here.  For 2013 News, here.}

October 1, 2012

Two events of interest associated with Arion Press. The first is October 2nd (so act quickly!), the second begins November 1st.

1) The French Heritage Society is pleased to offer the opportunity for you to visit the historic printing and bookmaking facilities of ARION PRESS and to learn from the author, Diana Ketcham, about their latest publication, THOMAS JEFFERSON’S Paris Walks.   This edition is a tribute to Jefferson the walker and to the city whose beauty inspired him to explore it on foot. This is an opportunity to support French Heritage’s wonderful work in restoring historic architecture and gardens in France. As a fund raiser, admission is $45 at the door.  Here is the invite. Please contact Arion Press via email here, or call 415-668-2542 for more information.

Invite to Arion Press, Paris Walks reception

2) Arion Press will exhibit in New York at the Park Avenue Armory again this year during the International Fine Print Dealers Print Fair, opening October 31 and extending through Sunday, November 4. Publications with artists Raymond Pettibon, Kiki Smith, Wendy Artin, Julie Mehretu, and William T. Wiley, among others, will be on display. This will also be the first chance to see the upcoming publication from Arion Press, Stone from Delphi, by Seamus Heaney, with illustrations by Wendy Artin.

For those of you that can get to New York within this time period, this is an excellent chance to see first hand many of the works of Arion Press.  Having just spent the day today at Arion Press, I can tell you that getting up close and personal with such works is always the way to go, and gives you a whole new appreciation for the excellent work Arion Press does. Contact Arion Press via email here, or call 415-668-2542 for more information. Tickets for the fair can be purchased here.

Besides Arion Press, there are scores and scores of other exhibitors, presenting over 500 years of printmaking from early woodcuts and traditional engravings to etchings, lithographs and screen printing, with a who’s who list of artists represented.  See here for summary information on the fair.

September 28, 2012

From Alberto Tallone Editore: In a few days the event of the year for Italian, if not European, bibliophily will take place. It involves the most ancient club of Italian bibliophiles, the “Cento Amici del Libro” – founded in 1939 in Florence by Tammaro de Marinis – and consists of an exhibition to the public of the art book 2012: a hundred exemplars created for the privileged, selected members of the Club.

Each exemplar consists in an original work by artist Gabriella Benedini, in the shape of an open book made of wood and other materials, which supports on one of his two halves a “real” book and can be closed around it. The book within, sixteen inedited poems by contemporary poet Maria Luisa Spaziani (who had been Eugenio Montale‘s partner), has been made by us: set by hand with the Garamond types cast in Paris by Deberny & Peignot; printed on pure cotton paper made in Sicily at the handpress Stanhope which belonged to Maurice Darantiere (see the picture below).

This is the first art book of the “Cento Amici del Libro” which has not resulted in an illustrated book: rather, it is a pure typographical book, as it is according to our style, which is part and completes Benedini’s work of art. Benedini’s work is inspired to the content of the poems, all of them dedicated to the sea. The same theme, the sea, has always recurred in Benedini’s production.

The installation, which displays to the public all of the hundred art books of this year, is very scenographic: we shot a picture of it while it was under construction (in the foreground, from right to left: Enrico Tallone, Gabriella Benedini, Zoe Fermani – her husband Gaetano Fermani is the president of “Cento Amici del Libro” club – Elisa Tallone). The installation, untitled “Bibliotheca”, will be open to the public on October 9th. The art books will be in display until November 4th , when they will be handed out by lot to the members.

Contact Alberto Tallone Editore for more information on the book or exhibition.

Non si ripose il mare, Maria Luisa Spaziani, Alberto Tallone Editore
Non si ripose il mare, Maria Luisa Spaziani, Alberto Tallone Editore, Colophon
Installation “Bibliotheca” – from right to left: Enrico Tallone, Gabriella Benedini, Zoe Fermani – her husband Gaetano Fermani is the president of “Cento Amici del Libro” club – Elisa Tallone
Gaetano Fermani together with Enrico and Gabriella
The handpress Stanhope which belonged to Maurice Darantiere.

September 26, 2012

Sophie Schneideman Rare Books now has a complete collection of Ashendene Press books for sale, most of which are stunning. See the catalogue here. In addition, many of you know how I think Allen Press books the highpoint of American fine press history. Ms. Schneideman also has a pretty impressive collection of those for sale also.  See here.  Lastly, she does have a a Kelmscott Chaucer in a pigskin binding at the moment. You may want to contact her if you have interest in that.

September 21, 2012


  • Charles Agvent sent out a note this week mentioning that he has recently posted on his web site 175 new Limited Editions Club acquisitions including original art for some of the books; publisher’s, office, and proof copies of the books; and books still in their original shipping containers, as well as some high points of the press.  You can contact him here should you have interest in any of them.
  • Arion Press should be starting to ship their next release,  The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins, with illustrations by Stan Washburn, within the coming days and weeks.  I will post pictures soon after receiving mine.

September 13, 2012

Shanty Bay Press

Shanty Bay Press is working on their next edition, one that I am very excited about.  It is a selection of 15 stories from Ovid’s Metamorphoses, which they are hoping to have ready early next year. Each story will come with its own illustration and simple pochoir initial. I have included photo’s of a few of the photogravures to be included below and will report back with sample photos of the pochoir initial’s and binding as they become available.  Here is information on the book from Walter Bachinski of the press:

“We are using the so called Garth translation. It is a big book with 168 pages which includes blanks. The page size is 14 1/2 inches high by 10 inches wide. There will be 2 editions: the regular edition will  be 65 copies and will be quarter bound in leather on boards. The special edition will be 10 copies and will have a full leather binding and an extra set of the photogravures. We have chosen 15 stories from the Metamorphoses, each with its own illustration and simple pochoir initial. The title page will also have a photogravure ( the head of Apollo) with the word ‘OVID’ done as pochoir. The type on the title page is 30 point Bembo titling and 24 Bembo italic. The book is entirely hand set 16 point Bembo. I worked about a year on the drawings for the Metamorphoses. These were then scanned and electronically sent to Jon Goodman in Massachusetts. Jon is making the photogravure plates and printing the images intaglio on the printed sheets of the book that I send him. The results are quite stunning. We hope to start the binding process in late October and have something ready for Codex in February.  My partner Janis is the binder. The specials will be ready later in the year. The cost of the regular edition will be $3,000.00. We are not sure about the specials yet.”

With only 65 copies planned, those with interest or questions should contact the press here. Those who are not familiar with the work of Shanty Bay Press including the art of Walter Bachinski, I encourage you to spend some time on their website, or go to one of the many public collections that hold their works. You will see fantastic fine press works.

Arethusa, Shanty Bay Press, Metamorphosis
Bacchus, Shanty Bay Press, Metamorphosis
Io, Shanty Bay Press, Metamorphosis

September 3, 2012

Nawakum Press

Nawakum Press has announced two upcoming projects.  Contact David Pascoe at the press for more information or to express interest.

The first will be a very limited edition of a short story by an aging and blind Jorge Luis Borges titled The Book of Sand. It is taken from the last of Borges’ major collections, by the same name, the Spanish language version of which was first published in 1975. The edition is both in English and in Spanish, with the translation by Andrew Hurley. The story is of an unexpected visit, by a used book salesman, to the apartment in Buenos Aires of a retired librarian from The National Library of Argentina. The book this librarian ends up procuring is both magical and diabolical, and leads him eventually back into the library.

The edition is being designed, printed and bound by Larry Van Velzer and Peggy Gotthold of Foolscap Press (whose wonderful Dialogue of the Dogs was recently reviewed here). The text will be letterpress printed. Etchings by Northwest artist Thomas Wood will both accompany the text and be incorporated into the innovative book structure as well. The structure itself draws inspiration from the former Biblioteca National in Buenos Aires. Thomas Wood has been an artist and printmaker for over forty years and studied under master printmaker Luigi Arcuri of the Academia delle Belle Arti,FlorenceHis art brings easily recognizable elements of nature and civilization into strange concrete fusion, often combining moral and metaphysical ideas in a delicate dance that at once both challenges and delights.

The second will be the publishing in 2013 of a limited edition titled Outside consisting of six short stories of Barry Lopez, all taken from hisNotes trilogy. The stories span nearly twenty years of his writing from Desert Notes in 1976, to River Notes in 1979, followed by Field Notes in 1994. Lopez is an award winning essayist, prose stylist and fiction writer who received theNational Book Award for his nonfiction work Arctic Dreams. He is an unusually compelling storyteller, and his writings are often compared to Henry David Thoreau. Renowned artist and illustrator Barry Moser has designed the edition, and his engravings will be illustrating the text.

August 26, 2012

Arion Press

Arion Press has announced that an inventory review has just turned up one copy of Arion Press’s three-volume Tristram Shandy. It must be purchased with one of the separate prints by John Baldessari. The set with the print is $7,000. Subscribers who own the book already may purchase individual prints for $5,000.

The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman by LAURENCE STERNE, with an essay by Melvyn New and with 39 photo-collages (with excerpts from the novel) signed by JOHN BALDESSARI, presented separately in three volumes with Baldessari print, 1988. Original binding: $7,000.00. 

Tristam Shandy, Arion Press

Arion Press also has for sale some other hard-to-find Arion titles officially noted as out of print. The prices are fixed and reflect current values, which are higher than the announced price at publication. These books are generally in as-new condition.

31. Poems of W. B. Yeats, selected and introduced by Helen Vendler, with 6 etchings by Richard Diebenkorn, signed, 1990. Original binding: $2,500.00
27. Ulysses by JAMES JOYCE, printer’s edition, 1988. [Note: In addition to the book edition of 150 copies, a text-only “printer’s edition” without bound-in etchings was published. This edition is limited to 10 copies.] Printer’s edition in original binding, with extra suite: $30,000.00
24. Captivity Narrative of Hannah Duston, events of 1697 related by Cotton Mather, John Greenleaf Whittier, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Henry David Thoreau, with an introduction by Glenn Todd and with 35 woodblock prints signed by RICHARD BOSMAN, 1987. Variant binding: $750.00
19. The Big Sleep by RAYMOND CHANDLER, with an introduction by Lawrence Clark Powell and with 40 photographs by LOU STOUMEN, 1986. Variant binding: $750.00
18. The World Is Round by GERTRUDE STEIN, with pictures by CLEMENT HURD and with a companion volume, The World Is Not Flat by Edith Thacher Hurd, 1986. Variant binding: $750.00
14. The Temple of Flora, edited by Glenn Todd and Nancy Dine, with art by JIM DINE, 1984. Original binding: $7,500.00
10. The Apocalypse, The Revelation of Saint John the Divine from the King James Version of the Bible, with 29 woodblock prints by Jim Dine. Original binding: $10,000.00
4.  A Travel Book by FRED MARTIN, with 78 drawings signed by Martin, 1976. Variant binding with silkscreened, hand-colored print, signed: $1,000.00
1. Picture Poems by ANDREW HOYEM, catalogue of drawings with related writings, 1961-1974, for an exhibition at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, 1975. Paper wrappers: $100.00

August 8, 2012

The Limited Editions Club (LEC) now has a website available to view and purchase books that they have in stock. As I mentioned in a post last October, I had the opportunity to spend a few hours with Jeanne Shiff at the LEC offices last October. I was able to flip through most of the Shiff-era LEC books, as well as view many prints.  The books were absolutely fabulous. Really, truly at the quality peak of Livre d’Artiste fine press publications. Books and Vines has highlighted many of these, but the new LEC site has fantastic pictures and more comprehensive information. Check back frequently as they intend to do a fair bit of reorganizing in addition to adding more photos

This page will occasionally be updated with announcements on upcoming books to be published by fine press producers, along with others news that may be of interest to those collecting fine press books. Fine press publishers are welcome to send me information on upcoming releases, or other announcements that may be of interest to Books and Vines readers. Occasionally their may be some announcements on releases of certain collectible wines which, of course, should be imbibed while reading fine press books. To see Fine Press News for post August 2012, go here.

July 24, 2012

Arion Press

The next release from Arion Press will be sometime this September when they will be publishing The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins, with illustrations by Stan WashburnThe Moonstone was written in 1868, and is considered the first detective novel in the English language, and has been very influential in that regard. Along with The Woman in Whiteit was the most successful of the novels of Wilkie Collins, a prolific and popular writer of the Victorian era. Stan Washburn‘s art is on display in collections around the country. He has illustrated three other Arion Press books; Tono-BungayThe Price and A Lie of the Mind.  As an aside, Mr. Washburn’s blog is excellent and should be a ‘must go-to’ for art fans. In short, Moonstone is a joy to read and I greatly look forward to this edition from Arion Press. Please contact Arion Press for questions or information on ordering.

July 8, 2012

Foolscap Press

Foolscap Press now has information and pictures up on their website for their wonderful new release, Dialogue of the Dogs from Miguel de Cervantes. Orders are now being taken. Since the edition is limited to 100 copies, with only 90 numbered editions for sale, you might want to jump on it if you have interest. Contact Lawrence Van Velzer and/or Peggy Gotthold here for questions or to order. They can also be reached at (831) 429-6489. I am looking forward to my copy and will post more soon after receiving and reading it.

June 21, 2012

Deep Wood Press

The Intruder, by John D. Voelker (1903-1991), better known by his pen name Robert Traver, is now available from Deep Wood Press. The book is illustrated with 10 wood engravings by Jim Westergard, an internationally exhibited and renowned printmaker,  and includes a foreword by Richard F. Vander Even, co-founder of the John D. Voelker Foundation.

The regular edition is quarter-bound in heavy board with a Canapetta book cloth spine and Twinrocker Rustler paper. Copper foil title on cover and an embossed umber printed panel with Jim Westergard’s small “fly” wood engraving printed on green paper inset into it. Dark green Hahnemuhle Bugra flyleaves back up the book blocks which are all hand sewn on straps, mull attached and cased in. The book is composed in 14 pt Linotype Janson with ATF Garamond in display sizes and printed in 5 colors on Hahnemuhle Shiller 150gsm paper. 8 1/4 x 10 3/8 x 5/8 inches, 34 pages. Edition of 150 books, the first 20 are reserved for the deluxe edition (which will be available shortly) and 10 unbound copies are available for hand binders. Signed and numbered.

Please contact Chad Pastotnik for questions or to order. As you can see, the book is beautiful.

The Intruder, Deep Wood Press, Cover and Spine (Regular Edition)
The Intruder, Deep Wood Press, Title Page
The Intruder, Deep Wood Press, Sample Illustration & Text

June 14, 2012

Limited Editions Club

I had an opportunity to talk with Carol Grossman yesterday concerning her eagerly anticipated book on the Limited Editions Club.  Here is what I know:

The book will cover the entire history of the LEC, from the 1928 to the present with:

  • Biographical information on the Macy’s (there will be lots and lots about the Macy era due to his role and the tremendous amount of books produced within it)
  • Biographical information on the Shiff’s
  • Stories/anecdotes behind the books and art work
  • A bibliography which will have more information than found in any of the other bibliographies from/of the club
  • The format and design of the book has not been finalized, but it will be a large book likely running into the hundreds of pages
  • I believe it will be released sometime in 2013; I do not know a more specific time as of yet

By the way, Mrs. Grossman has a couple speaking engagements lined up that you may be interested in:

  • Mrs. Grossman will be speaking at the Nashville Public Library (which has a fantastic fine books collection including an entire LEC collection!) late this month focusing on the Shiff era (1978 forward). If and when I get more specific information on this, I will post it or link to it. Those in the area, call the library for details.
  • In October, Mrs. Grossman will be speaking at Oak Knoll Fest on Macy’s printers and designers. The event is October 5-7, 2012. This would be a great time to hear some of what will inevitably be in the book, as well as enjoying the entire event which, besides Mrs. Grossman’s talk, includes:
    • Jerry Kelly speaking on the future of fine printing in the digital age
    • A symposium addressing the creation and place of hand produced books in the twenty-first century from the aspects of printing, binding, paper, and illustration, to the current trends in collecting
    • A fine press exhibition and sale.

June 13, 2012

Arion Press

As mentioned earlier in Books and Vines News, after the soon to be released Thomas Jefferson’s Paris Walks, Arion Press will be publishing The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins, with illustrations by Stan Washburn. It has now been announced that following The Moonstone will be a book with a selection of poems with classical themes by Seamus Heaney. It will be titled Stone from Delphi and will be edited by Helen Vendler (who will also provide the introduction) and illustrated by Wendy Artin. Another great selection, in my opinion, and I look forward to getting it!

Don’t worry…The Day of the Locust, from Nathaniel West, illustrated by Ed Ruscha, is still in the works for 2012/2013, as mentioned in an earlier Books and Vines News entry. It will include an essay by film historian David Thomson. Plans are also under way for publishing the libretto for Porgy & Bess, by DuBose Heyward and Ira Gershwin, with prints by Kara Walker. Also planned, Gustave Flaubert‘s Bouvard & Pecuchet, with prints by William Kentridge.  You can see the fine people at Arion Press are very busy with a fantastic set of books in the works!  I will bring you more information as I find it out!

June 8, 2012

Arion Press

Much more information on Arion’s forthcoming Thomas Jefferson’s Paris Walks, with text by Diana Ketcham, with forty-six photographs by Michael Kenna, and seven maps of Jefferson’s Paris, is now available on the Arion Press website.  The book is available for purchase now and hopefully should be shipping within a couple weeks.  Am looking forward to getting mine!

June 5, 2012

The Barbarian Press

Subscribers received an update from Crispin and Jan Elsted yesterday on upcoming publications from Barbarian Press. The update is summarized below:

1) Bordering on the Sublime: Ornamental Typography at the Curwen Press

It has taken much longer than we imagined it would to organize the materials from the Curwen Press into a form which would enable us, first, to see what exactly we had in hand, and second, to work with the ornaments and borders to shape them into the structure of the book. That work is ongoing, and we think it high time to let you know how the project is going on. We hope it will interest you to hear about it in some detail.

First, there are the borders themselves. These arrived tied up, wrapped and labelled, ready to put into the press for printing. The wrappings were labelled with a code which identified the border and, in the case of the many two-colour borders, made it possible to pair up the two packages which belonged together. There are also about fifty small packets containing various dashes, ‘spots’, and dividing strips made up from ornaments and obviously kept on hand in the press to spice up a job or to help organize it visually on a page.

Next, there were two frames of small type cases containing ornaments laid out for setting. These were simple enough to deal with in themselves, but the archive also included nearly one hundred packets of new ornaments from the foundry which had never been distributed into cases, and for which there was no room in the cases we had received. That made it necessary to seek out some suitable frames of small cases to contain all these new ornaments.

In addition to the borders and the type, there are about a thousand proofs of the borders as they were used in menus, announcements, invitations, award certificates, bookplates and so forth.  These proofs are invaluable in a number of ways. Many of them have comments or notes marked on them: most are keyed to the codes on the wrapped borders, and other notes detail various jobs in which they were used, since borders were generally kept ready for use whenever needed. Furthermore, a great number of the proofs are present in multiple copies with different colour combinations, giving an interesting sense of the colours fashionable in the job printing of the time (generally the 1950s through the 1970s), and suggesting to us ways in which we might show them in the book. There are some proofs for which the borders have been distributed (these will have to be recreated) just as there are some borders set for which we received no proofs. In order to consolidate this, we unwrapped and proofed every border we received, and now have a much clearer idea of what we have to work with.

In planning the book it has always been our intention to have at least two texts, which will provide historical background and visual support for the multitude of borders which will be featured. One text will be anecdotal, concerning the Curwen Press, its day-to-day operation, and something of its impact on readers and lovers of the typographic styles of the time. The other main text of the book will be a lengthy essay by David Jury, proprietor of the Fox Ash Press, director of the typography program at the University of Colchester, a noted typographer and designer, and a typographic historian who has published extensively about typographic style through the 20th century.

In addition to this, there will be three appendices. The first will concern the historical use of ornaments with some discussion of their varying styles. The second will comprise a reprint of a pamphlet called ‘A Grammar of Type Ornament’ published by The Monotype Recorder in 1960. The third will document the make-up of each border in the book by printing, in black, a single example of each of the ornaments used in each border, keyed to the page on which that border appears; this will allow those who are unused to looking at typographical ornament to see more clearly how these small decorative elements combine to create their effects.  Finally, there will be an annotated bibliography of notable books about ornamental typography, including specimen books, historical treatments, and books of fleurons and ornamental arrangement.

The book will of course print all but the oversized borders in a dazzling range of colours, some with included texts typical of the period, others simply presented to be enjoyed for their own invention and beauty.

Our plan is to produce three states of the book:

A. About 30 copies. Quarter leather & decorated paper, with many borders accompanying the text, and a photographic essay showing marked-up proofs, some of the made-up formes, and details of the printing process. Accompanied by a portfolio containing all the oversized borders, several new borders created for this book, + two original Curwen proofs. Typographical frontispiece. Boxed.  h  Approximately $2,500, subject to change.

B. About 80 copies. As above, but Quarter cloth, with portfolio of oversize proofs, but without original borders & Curwen proofs. Slipcased.  h Approximately $1,500, Subject to change.

C. About 80 copies.  Book as in B. Photographic frontispiece. Slipcased. h Approximately $750, subject to change.

2) The SeasonsFour Bagatelles to Pass the Time of Year

This is made up of four quarto pamphlets, each of which collects a group of our favourite poems concerning one of the seasons. Each of these is 16 pages, printed on hand-made or mould-made paper, and sewn into printed wraps of hand-made paper. The poems, which include both classics and some contemporary pieces, are accompanied by decorative illustrations, two full-page and at least one half-page, comprised of printer’s ornaments, some printed in two colours.

The four pamphlets are printed in fairly short editions of 100 copies, of which 50 of each have been reserved to be made up into sets initially available only to subscribers. These sets will present the pamphlets in a Japanese-style box covered with some of our remaining stock of marbled papers by the late Ann Muir. In addition, they will contain a broadside which will be exclusively available with this set. The sets will be sent out in early autumn. The retail price for the set is $310; for subscribers $217.

3) The Ingoldsby Legends

In the 1990s, when we were visiting the Massey College Library in Toronto, we were shown a group of original wood engraved blocks from the Victorian period which we gathered had never been published. They proved to be eight illustrations, cut in the 1860s for an edition of R. H. Barham’s Ingoldsby Legends which had never materialized.  Many of you, probably most of you in fact, will not have heard of The Ingoldsby Legends. These were a collection of humorous gothic poems by an English clergyman named Richard Barham. He was an Oxford graduate, and as a priest of the Chapel Royal he had plenty of leisure time in which to write humorous verse and stories. In 1837 he began to publish a series of verse and prose narratives in Bentley’s Miscellany under the pseudonym of Thomas Ingoldsby. These became so popular that they were collected in book form in 1840, and reappeared in many editions over the next fifty years. In fact they have never been out of print in some form or other; at one point they were illustrated by Arthur Rackham.

The blocks we were loaned to print illustrate eight of the legends, of which we are printing six, with two added which are favourites of our own. A seventh of the eight blocks will serve as a frontispiece, and the eighth – which illustrates a piece which is by no means one of Barham’s best, and is moreover very long – will be included only in the portfolio of proofs with the deluxe copies. As well as the eight poems, there will be an Afterword on Barham and the Ingoldsby Legends and a historical note on Victorian trade engravers and wood engraving.

We intend publishing the book in two states, the Regular edition being quarter bound in cloth with patterned paper over boards, possibly slipcased; the Deluxe to be quarter bound in leather with patterned paper and slipcased with a portfolio containing proofs of all eight blocks, and of a ninth titling block too large to be used in the book. The paper will be mould-made Heine, and the engravings will be printed on Zerkall White Smooth and tipped in.

The book will be a broad quarto of approximately 160 pages, with a page size of 7½  by 9 inches; the types will be Poliphilus and Blado, with some original Victorian initials  judiciously salted in. The prices are still uncertain, but we anticipate the Regular edition will run about $450, and the Deluxe between $650 and $750 – before subscriber’s discounts, of course. We plan to publish this in time for Christmas, 2012.

4) The Splendour of a Morning, Poems of  C. P. Cavafy

Our good friend and colleague Paul Razzell, presently editor of Parenthesis  for North America and generally man about books and presses, set up his own Inferno Press several years ago with the intention of printing small editions. However – and very sadly, as the quality of the few things he did produce will attest – he has decided to close the press as he has no time in which to pursue it.

Somewhere along the way, Paul had received from David Smulders these translations of 37 poems by the Alexandrian poet C. P. Cavafy (1863-1933),  now regarded as one of the most important poets of the twentieth century. The translations were made while Smulders was teaching English in Greece. Paul agreed to translate them, and after consulting us he commissioned Peter Lazarov to illustrate the poems. Peter produced and sent five lovely engravings, but the project went no further.

Paul has very kindly consented to our taking over the project here, and we will produce the book sometime in 2013. At the moment we have no details about the book beyond the texts and the images, but it will be a delight to print these translations, which are deft and bright renderings of the originals – and of course to have Peter Lazarov’s work in hand once again. As plans progress, we’ll announce them on the website.

5) Endgrain Editions Four: Simon Brett – An Engraver’s Progress

Simon’s work is among the greatest wonders of our experience as printers and publishers. The amount of it, first of all, is staggering: there are thousands of images. More extraordinary than that is its quality, which from the beginning has been exacting, detailed, and exquisite. Most striking of all, however, is the intelligence and sensitivity which Simon brings to even the smallest of his engravings. The thought of producing a book which would make some attempt to convey the scope and the depth of this artist’s work is exhilarating, and we are looking forward immensely to the work. Jan derives the greatest pleasure from printing engravings, and Simon’s work speaks to her in a way which – as she and Simon have both said – is uncannily attuned.

This Endgrain Edition will be in the larger format of EE3: Peter Lazarov, but will be more extended in scope. With Simon, we have made a reasonably firm selection of images which will extend from the earliest work to very recent images, and encompass bookplates, illustrations, pattern blocks, and individual prints. We anticipate there being as many as a hundred engravings. We will also commission a new engraving for the frontispiece, and a pattern paper for the covers. Simon, who is also a fine writer, will provide an introduction.

The book will be printed in 2013, and will be published in the late autumn of 2013 with a launch at the Oxford Fair in November. As always with the Endgrain series, there will be two states: the Regular edition will be quarter bound in cloth with patterned paper sides; the Deluxe will be quarter leather, slipcased, with a signed and numbered proof of the commissioned frontispiece included in a folder. Prices and edition size to be announced.

June 4, 2012

Information and sign up for CODEX IV (Book Fair and Symposium), February 10 through February 13, 2013 in Berkeley, California, is now available here.  The CODEX web site has more information. For any questions, contact Peter Koch.


June 2, 2012

The Old School Press

While technical details and prices are still in flux, here is the current state of play for the upcoming ‘The Colours of Rome’, courtesy of Martyn Ould of The Old School Press…

John Sutcliffe knows about colour. A former regional curator at the National Trust and now active as an interior decorator, his expertise in the topic, in particular in an architectural setting, has been used by Farrow & Ball, a company that will surely be known to many for its traditional paints and artisanal wallpapers. For many years John’s interest in colour has taken him to the Mediterranean, to Italy, and in particular to Rome. The buildings of Rome’s centro storico carry on their walls many layers of coloured limewash and distemper, layers that have both accumulated and decayed over time, thereby capturing the changing fashion in colour.

John’s vision for this book is a survey of the city’s colourscape, a palette of colours so different from those of, say, Venice, Tuscany, or Palermo, and a palette that is today in a period of great change. His new essay traces the history of that palette and the influences that have led it to its state today.

To illustrate the essay John made a special trip to Rome in the Spring of 2012, returning with twenty sheets of colours copied from the buildings themselves. His carefully chosen selection is designed to demonstrate the diversity of the palette and also to draw together two very different strands of tradition that have created the appearance of the streets of Rome today. Each of the twenty colours will be illustrated with a large patch applied directly onto its own page using water-based paints. By splitting these pages, the binding will make it possible for the reader to see the colours in different combinations just as they appear in Rome. A swatch card of colour chips will be included in a wallet at the rear of the book.

The text will be printed on a large page of mould-made paper. The binding will be in full cloth on which will be printed a photograph of a typical wall from one of Rome’s buildings. We expect an edition of about one hundred standard copies.

There will also be twenty de luxe copies. Each will take the form of a solander box containing, in addition to the standard edition book, bottled samples of nine of the raw pigments themselves in earth form.

If you know our books you will know we love colour, so this was a project that appealed from the outset. If Rome, architecture, and the way our cities change interest you, this book will appeal, and we hope that the production qualities will enhance your enjoyment. Uniquely it will be the only record of the actual colours to be seen in Rome today, perhaps the only such survey of any city.

Please contact Martyn Ould with any questions or to reserve a copy.

May 24, 2012

Foolscap Press

The next release from Foolscap Press will be Dialogue of the Dogs from Miguel de Cervantes. For details, pay attention to the Foolscap website over the coming weeks. I will post an update here as soon as more details are announced. Best yet, contact Larry or Peggy Van Velzer and subscribe, so you’ll soon get a prospectus telling you all about the fine book you will then receive!!!  I am very excited about this work.  First, it is an excellent story. Secondly, it will be a nice fine press companion to my Arion Press Don Quixote. Last but not least, take a look at the work Foolscap does, and you’ll see this will be well worth pursuing.

May 18, 2012

The Bowler Press

The campaign video for Pride and Prejudice is here!

Go here for the actual campaign where you can watch the video, get information on the campaign and on the Pride and Prejudice edition, and donate to the campaign.

May 5, 2012

The Bowler Press

More news from The Bowler Press on the fund-raising campaign for their upcoming three-colume Pride and Prejudice. Here are the perks being offered for different levels of contribution. Contact Jarrett Morrison for more information or to purchase any of the below.

$10 Bookmark – When life interrupts, mark your place with this P&P letterpress-printed bookmark which will feature a spot engraving. (Unnumbered prints.)

$15 Invitation Netherfield Ball– An invitation to the affair at Netherfield Park, letterpress-printed. (Unnumbered prints.)

$20 Set of Three Bookplates – What better way to show who owns your 3vol set than three bookplates featuring a new portrait engraving of Jane Austen. (Unnumbered prints.)

$25 Prospectus – The official detailed prospectus for the forthcoming 3-volume limited edition. Featuring an illustration from the book, swatches of materials, sample text from the novel. (Unnumbered copies.) Backers outside of Canada and USA, please add $15 for postage.

$50 First Page (Broadside) – An embellished design of the famous opening lines presented as a frameable broadside print. Numbered edition of 125 copies. Backers outside of Canada and USA, please add $15 for postage.

$100 Ephemeral Collection – Includes the Bookmark, Netherfield Invitation, Bookplates, First Page broadside, and the prospectus. Backers outside of Canada and USA, please add $15 for postage.

$300 Standard Boxed Ephemera – Receive the Ephemeral Collection in a cloth covered clamshell box – a perfect complement to the standard presentation of the 3 Vol Set. Backers outside of Canada and USA, please add $25 for postage.

$500 Deluxe Boxed Ephemera – Receive the Ephemeral Collection in a half-leather clamshell box – a perfect complement to the deluxe presentation of the 3 Vol set. Backers outside of Canada and USA, please add $25 for postage.

$1300 Three Volume Set Standard Edition – Receive all three volumes in the standard binding and the Ephemeral Collection (without box). Vol 1 expected November 1, 2013. The next volumes follow in 12-16 month intervals. Backers outside of Canada and the USA, please add $150 for postage.  The ephemera is the bonus for pre-ordering in one lump sum; quantities are limited!

$2950 Three Volume Set Deluxe Edition – Receive all three volumes in the deluxe binding and the Ephemeral Collection (without box). Vol 1 expected November 1, 2013. The next volumes follow in 12-16 month intervals. Backers outside of Canada and USA, please add $200 for postage. The ephemera is the bonus for pre-ordering in one lump sum; quantities are limited!

$20,000 Pemberley Patron – Receive the 3 Vol Set in the deluxe binding, plus the Deluxe-Boxed Ephemeral Collection, and have your patron status acknowledged in the Colophon of the edition. Vol 1 expected November 1, 2013. The next volumes follow in 12-14 month intervals.

May 10, 2012

Deep Woods Press

  • “The Intruder” will be out within the month.
  • The future brings some interesting prospects with a book containing all the illustrations used for the Michigan trout stamps, a historical survey – Jerry Dennis has already agreed to work on a text for that book.
  • A book is being planned with renowned printmaker Steven Sorman – our own little creation myth.
  • Another installment of one of the seasons is also on deck with Jerry Dennis and wood engravings by Glenn Wolff.
  • Oscar Wilde’s “The Nightingale and the Rose” is nearly done with the typesetting.
  • And a few more fun things as well

Work is wrapping up for Robert Traver’s (John Voelker) “The Intruder” taken from “Trout Madness”.  Also all the copies of “Killing the Bear” are bound and ready to go. Check out Chad Pastotnik’s excellent blog on his Deep Woods Press, and fine press book making in general.

May 5, 2012

The Bowler Press

Readers of Books and Vines know I am a fan of Jarrett Morrison and his imprint, The Bowler Press. As hinted at before, Morrison has been planning a fine press edition of Jane Austen’s masterpiece, Pride and Prejiduce.  I have been in eager anticipation for this one. It has now been formally announced, with sales and fundraising started. See here for details, most of which is copied here. I am confident this will be a top notch work, and hope many of you consider a purchase. For what it is worth, I also like the fundraising plan; for small publishers this very may well be a wave of the future.

Pride and Prejudice
by Jane Austen
with engravings by Jarrett Morrison

3 volumes
2 states
1 beloved novel

No private press has undertaken such a small edition of this novel. Hardly a private press today will undertake a work of such length, and choose to hand-set it. So why do we? We love Jane. Moreso, we love Pride and Prejudice. And we know others do too. Favourite stories are treasures. We like to design them that way.

The project, however, leaves us gobsmacked when we consider the quantity of materials needed, and needed altogether, and the costs therein. Although we are breaking it up into 3 volumes, as it was originally published by T. Egerton in 1813, all the materials must be purchased together, so that everything will match when the books are put together on (your) shelf at the conclusion of the project.

The Books

The text will be hand-set in Fournier, with the accompanying italic, from English Monotype matrices at the Bixler Letterfoundry in Skaneateles, NY, and printed letterpress on natural white Zerkall mouldmade paper. Each volume will feature a dozen+ illustrations, including a multi-colour frontispiece. There will be two binding presentations:

Standard, $1500, will be quarter-bound in dark green silk with offset-printed patterned paper over boards and slipcased. Prospectus included. 114 numbered copies, including 4 copies for private distribution.

Deluxe, $3500, will be bound in full leather honey book-calf, tooled in gold-leaf, boxed in a half-leather clamshell with a suite of prints. Prospectus included. 24 lettered copies, including 2 copies for private distribution.

Prices are in CAD. Pre-purchase discounts available. Please contact the press.

Regarding advance purchase, there are two options:

The first, full payment (not including shipping) and enjoy a 20% discount. This cost may be broken into 3 instalments payable over a period of 4 months. The first instalment is due within 2 weeks of placing the order (to accommodate mailed cheques). The second instalment is due 2 months following, the third another 2 months following. Shipping fees are due when each of the books is complete.

The second option, advance purchase volume-by-volume, will benefit from a 10% discount. The Vol.1 amount is due within 2 weeks of placing an order; the amount for Vol.2, plus shipping for Vol.1, is due when Vol.1 is complete; the amount for Vol.3, plus the shipping for Vol,2, is due when Vol.2 is complete; and shipping for Vol.3 is due when it is complete.

How long will it take?

The forecast calls for 12-14 months for each volume, once we’ve attained our fundraising goal of $20,000.

How are you raising the necessary funds?

We’re also doing something a little different this time around. In addition to accepting our normal pre-sales at a discount of 20% with full prepayment, we are hosting a special 45-day campaign on crowdfunding site, IndieGoGo. For contributions to the fundraising initiative, supporters will receive a variety of rewards based on contribution levels. Rewards include project themed ephemera, including bookmarks, book plates, an invitation to the Netherfield Ball, broadsides and more. Surplus ephemera may be available  at a future time. Visit our IndieGoGo campaign site for full details. Our IndieGoGo campaign will be active shortly.

What if I don’t want to use IndieGoGo?

Not to worry, directly supporting The Bowler Press is always the best option. Contact the press regarding discounts and payment options.

May 2, 2012

Horse Whisper Press

Horse Whisper Press is the imprint of Apollonia Felicity Elsted, the daughter of Jan and Crispin Elsted of Barbarian Press.  Ms. Elsted has recently published her third book under Horse Whisper Press, and readers of Books and Vines would do well to check it out, as Ms. Elsted clearly has inherited the talent of her parents!  From Ms. Elsted:

The book is a republication of a 19th century Canadian poem written by Edward Taylor Fletcher. He has not been published since the late 1890’s, and this poem, The Lost Island: Atlantis, is an amazing work which I discovered while in a third-year Canadian literature course taught by Dr. James Gifford. Fletcher’s work has been almost entirely forgotten for over a century, and when I learned of this after reading The Lost Island, I was upset that such a beautiful poem has been ignored in the canon of Canadian poetry. The landscape that is described in the poem is both stunning and recognizable to me: Fletcher retired and lived out his years in New Westminster, BC, and used local imagery in all of his poetry. I think it was his relationship with the Canadian wilderness that made me want to recreate what the poet had first created in the 19th century.

The imagery in The Lost Island is both dark and magical – and so the the choice of Peter Lazarov to illustrate with wood engravings is excellent.

There are two versions available:

REGULAR. Van Dijck roman & italic with Huxley Vertical titling, printed on Zerkall mouldmade paper. Five wood engravings and two line drawings by Peter Lazarov. Hand bound by Alanna Simenson in quarter cloth and St. Armand handmade paper over boards. 52 pages. 100 copies. $150.

DELUXE. Accompanied by a suite of engravings and contained in a slipcase. 26 lettered copies. $230

To place an order or ask questions, please contact:

Apollonia Elsted c/o Crispin & Jan Elsted, Barbarian Press,
12375 Ainsworth St.,
Mission B.C., v4S IL4 Canada.

Or, by email or by phone, 604 826 8089

April 21, 2012

Deep Woods Press

Check out Chad Pastotnik’s excellent blog on his Deep Woods Press, and fine press book making in general.  Chad’s work is excellent, and I look forward to following his blog, including up to date tidbits and details on upcoming works.

April 5, 2012

Arion Press

Below, under the March 1 entry, Books and Vines announced two of the books planned for release in 2012 by Arion PressThomas Jefferson’s Paris Walks, with photographs by Michael Kenna and text by Diana Ketcham, along with The Day of the Locust, by Nathaniel West with art by Ed Ruscha. I am thrilled with a third book planned for this year, a favorite book of mine, that can now be announced…The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins, featuring art by Stan Washburn.

The Moonstone was written in 1868, and is considered the first detective novel in the English language, and has been very influential in that regard. Along with The Woman in Whiteit was the most successful of the novels of Wilkie Collins, a prolific and popular writer of the Victorian era.  Stan Washburn‘s art is on display in collections around the country. He has illustrated three other Arion Press books; Tono-BungayThe Price and A Lie of the Mind.  As an aside, Mr. Washburn’s blog is excellent and should be a ‘must go-to’ for art fans.

Moonstone is a joy to read, and I greatly look forward to this edition. It is shaping up to be a great year for subscribers of Arion Press!

The Bowler Press

See this link which contains an article on Jarrett Morrison and the Bowler Press.  The article gives a good background on Mr. Morrison and the works that he has done and is in the process of doing.  Also, a nice call out to Books and Vines! In other Bowler Press news, the Austen Folio is now fully subscribed. I am eager to get mine and will share pictures of it when I receive it. In addition, details on the Pride and Prejudice project are coming soon.

March 1, 2012

From David Bruce Smith Publications: Perhaps Books and Vines readers would be interested in this special promotion we are running for Tennessee this month.

Tennessee Williams would have been 101 on March 26, 2012. To celebrate, for the month of March 2012, David Bruce Smith Publications is offering their exquisite limited-edition, letterpress book TENNESSEE at a 10% discount plus $101 in honor of the playwright’s birth month. Regularly $3,000, the book is now $2,599 for a limited time.  Press release is here.

February 22, 2012

Arion Press

Some long anticipated news on upcoming publications from Arion Press came today, and I am excited as can be! As a teaser, allow me to make some seemingly random pronouncements…My favorite historical figure is Thomas Jefferson. One of my favorite historical/political eras is around the founding of the United States.  I enjoy books about early Hollywood, as well as themes about the corruption of the American dream that happens through economic, spiritual and social betrayal. A couple of my favorite Arion Press books are Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Hound of the Baskervilles and Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Silverado Squatters…largely due to the fantastic photography by Michael Kenna.  What could I possibly be getting at? What do these seemingly random things have to do with anything? You will soon see why I am thrilled with the announcement that follows.

Without much further ado, here are two of the projects underway at Arion Press for publication in 2012:

  1. Thomas Jefferson’s Paris Walks, with photographs by Michael Kenna and text by Diana Ketcham. In 2011, Arion Press commissioned the renowned photographer Michael Kenna to retrace Thomas Jefferson’s footsteps in Paris, the city Jefferson came to know and love as a diplomat to the French court, succeeding Benjamin Franklin. His five years there, from 1784 to 1789, are an interlude the historian Henry Adams calls the happiest of Jefferson’s life. The illustrations include rarely photographed sites from Jefferson’s daily rounds, such as the convent school where his two daughters were weekday boarders (along with Napoleon’s future empress, Josephine) and the interior of the Mint, where he commissioned medals of the heroes of the American Revolution. The narrative of Jefferson’s Paris adventure unfolds as the reader follows his habitual routes across the city, looking at art, buying books, and attending the scientific and literary salons.  The favorite Paris buildings of Jefferson the architect are identified. We learn how they influenced his designs for Monticello and the University of Virginia, as well has his vision for the public buildings of the new nation, including the future Washington, D. C. Photographer Michael Kenna is the artist of some of Arion Press’s most admired publications, including A. Conan Doyle’s The Hound of the Baskervilles and Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Silverado Squatters.
  • The Day of the Locust, by Nathaniel West. Arion Press has commissioned a new introduction to this classic Hollywood novel from the eminent film historian David Thomson. The art will be by Ed Ruscha.

For those that do not know Ed Ruscha, he is a major, highly recognized and important American artist, often associated with the Pop art movement, whose works often sell for millions. Ruscha, matched with a work such as The Day of the Locust, seems like an fantastically inspired choice that very well could result in an extremely collectible work.

I will be sure to let you know of other 2012 plans as I learn of them. I suggest you frequently check the Arion Press website also for news, events and other information.

Please contact Arion Press to place an advance order and/or to learn about the subscription discount.  These very well may (and should, in my opinion) go very quickly.

February 21, 2012

Lumiere Press

From Michael Torosian:

  • Lumiere Press is pleased to announce the publication of STEICHEN: Eduard et VoulangisThe Early Modernist Period 1915 – 1923, with an essay by Michael Torosian and an introduction by Howard Greenberg. This is a co-publication of the Howard Greenberg Gallery and Lumiere Press. From the prospectus: With a folio of Steichen masterpieces and newly discovered images published here for the first time, the book is an examination of a key period in the artistic evolution of one of the most important figures in the history of twentieth century art.  The book looks fantastic, please take a look!
  • We are also pleased to announce that a complete set of Lumiere Press books – from our inaugural Edward Weston publication of 1986 to our newest title on Eduard Steichen – has been acquired by The Department of Special Collections at St. Andrews University in Scotland. The 600 year old institution – the “third oldest university in the English-speaking world” – is home to a collection of more than 700,000 photographs, described as an “unsurpassed primary source in the early history of photography”. In a wonderful temporal alignment, this acquisition marks the 25th anniversary of the press, making our new presence in this prestigious collection all the more celebratory.

February 2, 2012

The Barbarian Press

Bad news for those dreaming to get their hands on PericlesIt is now completely sold out. If any book deserved a quick sell out, it is this fantastic effort…it is simply stunning. Pericles won the Alcuin Society Award for Excellence in Book design (Limited Editions) and a Judge’s Award at the Oxford Fine Press Book Fair in November 2011.

The good news is Barbarian Press moves ahead with a number of plans which will end up in our lucky hands over the coming months. The following is courtesy of Crispin Elsted (this info soon to be on Barbarian’s website):

1. Upon Vermilion Wheels: Poems for Autumn (In Print)

Upon Vermilion Wheels is the first of four seasonal ‘bagatelles’ which we plan to publish over the next year. Each of them will contain a selection of poems from the canon of English, American, and Canadian literature – and sometimes, in translation, from other languages – and will be illustrated as this one is with coloured arrangements of typographical ornaments, or ‘printer’s flowers’, as they are sometimes called. Those used here range from modern Czech leaves (the cover and title page), Eric Gill’s oak leaves with a 16th century acorn ornament, and 17th century French ornaments. Each of the pamphlets will be printed on hand-made paper.

The hand-made papers in Upon Vermilion Wheels are all from one of the great English papermills, Barcham Green and Company, whose Hayle Mill in Loose, Kent, ceased production in 1987. We have small stocks of several of their papers – not enough to do a full-sized book, but enough for pamphlets like this one. The text paper in this pamphlet is called Tovil, and is a cream laid paper. The cover paper is called Robin Cover; as far as Simon Barcham Green and I can recall after consultation, it was named for the printer Robin Heyeck.

Jan and I have chosen the poems from among our favourites, but have tried to avoid obvious choices such as Keats’ Ode to Autumn in favour of other poems which may not be so well-known.

Due to the limited quantities of Tovil, only a few copies of the pamphlet are available to non-subscribers. Fifty copies are set aside, and will be combined with the further three planned pamphlets in a boxed set available to present subscribers and patrons only, to be announced when the series is complete. The price for this pamphlet is C$50. Regrettably we cannot offer our usual trade discount on this item.

2. Some planned books have had to be rescheduled because of delays with Pericles, some for other reasons. Gaylord Schanilec: Pictures & Stories [Endgrain Editions Four], a major overview of the renowned American engraver’s colour engravings, is still projected, but the Pericles factor and the complicated logistics of getting the blocks to us have pushed it even further back. The blocks will be interspersed with Gaylord’s own narratives about their inspiration and the processes of their creation. Allowing for unavoidable delays in our schedule and in Gaylord’s, we have re-scheduled this book to 2013. (Remember that subscribers to Endgrain Editions will receive their 20% series discount on this volume.)

3.  In the meantime we have had a stroke of serendipity. The Massey College library at the University of Toronto has among its holdings eight wood engraved blocks produced by the Dalziel brothers, who were well-known trade engravers in the latter half of the 19th century. Among many other things, the Dalziels engraved John Tenniel’s iconic illustrations for Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass. These eight blocks, dating from the 1860s or ’70s, are illustrations for some of the Ingoldsby Legends by Richard Barham, but as far as is known the images were never published. As it happens, selections from The Ingoldsby Legends were among the favourite poems read to Crispin by his father when he was a child, so it will be pleasing to produce a selection of the poems with these contemporary illustrations to accompany them. This is planned for the early summer of 2012.

4.  In addition to this, editorial work has started on an important book about the Curwen Press. In 2009 we acquired the entire Curwen collection of Monotype ornaments, together with well over a hundred standing borders used in their work for many clients, press proofs of the borders in use, and over a hundred packets of new ornaments still in the foundry wrappings. Bordering on the Sublime: Ornamental Typography at the Curwen Press will reprint these borders, most in two or more colours, accompanied by essays by David Jury and Crispin Elsted on the Curwen Press’s history, their work with ornaments, and the use of ornaments generally. We plan to have this book in the press this summer, and to publish it early in 2013.

5. A further important book to appear in 2013 will be another in the Endgrain Editions series. An Engraver’s Progress: a Fifty Year Retrospective of the Work of Simon Brett will be launched at the Oxford Fair in November 2013 in celebration of Simon’s 70th birthday.

6. Other projects are in the planning stages, but are still too far off to have a page devoted to them. These include an edition of John Clare’s The Shepherd’s Calendar illustrated with engravings by Andy English, an Endgrain Edition on Richard Wagener, and Ovid’s Metamorphoses in the 1567 ‘Englishing’ of Arthur Golding, with engravings by Peter Lazarov.

Keep an eye on Barbarian’s website, and here, for further exciting news and developments.

The Bowler Press

After having thoroughly enjoyed The Importance of Being Earnest from Bowler Press, reviewed here, I am eagerly looking forward to getting my next two works from Bowler Press. Both should be available soon (Capt. Wentworth’s letter is available now). They are extremely limited, if you have interest, I suggest ordering now.

  • The letters from Jane Austen novels, in a 8 by 12 inch, navy and green rayon-covered, double-hinged folio. I believe there are only a few of the folio’s left. As for the letters:
    • Mr Darcy’s Letter is set in 12pt Fairbank, with Bembo Titling and touches of Fairbank digital polymer and Cancellaresca Bastarda, and printed on ivory Magnani Revere Book Suede. 5pp, enveloped in dove grey St Armand Handmade paper, 150 copies.
  • Capt. Wentworth’s Letter is hand-set in Spectrum italic with the roman for display and a touch of Cancellaresca Bastarda for initials. Letterpress printed in four colours on ivory Magnani Revere Book Suede using a Chandler and Price Old Style jobbing press. One postage stamp engraving by Jarrett Morrison. Measures six and one-half inches by ten and one-half inches (165 x 267mm); deckle edge along the foot.  Envelope constructed from indigo Canson Mi-Teintes and die-stamped in gold foil in Bickham Script.  200 copies.
  • A Modest Proposal, by Jonathan Swift, should be out a bit later this year. Those who have not read this will love it!  The text follows that of George Faulkner’s edition of Swift’s Works, 1735, including the complex italicization used in the first edition by Sarah Harding, 1729. 4.75″ x 9″ Double Pamphlet with accordion fold on Zerkall Nideggen, 22pp. Set in VanDijck. Dyptych illustration. 80 copies, including 10 deluxe (plus 1 hors commerce). Reserves now being accepted for standard copies only; all deluxe have sold out.

As soon as I can find out any information on the planned Robert Herrick’s Songs to Julia and the three volume Jane Austen Pride and Prejudice, I will let you know.

Chester Creek Press

The next book from the press will be The Raven, from Edgar Allen Poe. This will likely be ready for release sometime in early 2013. It will be illustrated by Anne Gregson of Schroon Lake, NY.  It is still in the planning stages, so other details do not exist yet.

Chester River Press

One of my favorite acquisitions of last year was a beautiful edition of Joseph Conrad’s The Heart of Darkness from Chester River Press.  I recently picked up a copy of their edition of the Iliad and the Odyssey, by Homer, which will be reviewed within the next week on Books and Vines. I have been informed that they only have about 15-20 copies left.  I suggest calling Gerald Cataldo at 410.810.3880 if you are interested.

I will be getting more information on what publishing plans are for the year, but for now, here is some known information:

  • Transfusion, a collection of 17 poems by esteemed Pulitzer Prize poet, Franz Wright in letterpress limited edition. Available February, 2012.
  • The Machine Stops, by E. M. Forster, illustrated, designer bound and boxed. Available Summer, 2012.

Deep Wood Press

From Chad Pastotnik:

  • Killing the Bear, (2012), by Judith Minty is now up on the website, including a lot of pictures. Considered her signature piece of prose literature, Killing the Bear is a powerful journey of the psyche. Judith is Professor Emerita at Humboldt State University and now makes her home in her native Michigan. Illustrated with wood engravings by Glenn Wolff.
  • The Intruder, (2012), by Robert Traver (John Voelker). This is a chapter from Voelker’s beloved book Trout Madness which easily stands alone by itself as a short story. Permission has been recieved from the family and Kitchie Hill Press to reprint this 1960 classic of fishing writing. Prepress continues…. Jim Westergard has done some wonderful wood engravings and a foreword has been written by Richard Vander Even. See here, scrolling about half way down the page.
  • The Nightingale and the Rose, (2012), by Oscar Wilde.  A project that is coming along nicely now.  Illustrated with one intaglio print by Chad Pastotnik, hand set in the font of Drew and printed on Hahnemuhle Gutenberg and Classic Laid papers.  Edition of 40 books,  24 pages.
  • The Hunter Gracchus, (in the planning phase), by Franz Kafka. A short story spinning around man’s search for personal salvation. Illustrated with intaglio, more details to come.

Hand and Eye Letterpress

As a follow up to their wonderful Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde recently released, Hand and Eye Letterpress hopes to publish two books this year. From Phil Abel:

  • The first is a slim volume of verse written as if by Philip Lucas, husband of Lucia in E F Benson’s Mapp and Lucia stories. It will have decorations by Ian Beck. We’ll also be putting out the fourth in our Paw Prints series of stories for children of all ages, as they say, written by Holly Skeet and illustrated by Chris Brown. There is a little about the others at
  • We want to do another book with Angela Barrett too, probably A Christmas Carol. We’re all great admirers of Dickens and it’s something that Angela has wanted to illustrate for years. This has moved from ‘hope to’ to ‘intend to’. Angela is starting to make some notes on what she’d like to draw and we’re doing trial settings in Walbaum and Scotch Roman.

The Old School Press

Readers of Books and Vines will recall how nice The Old School Press editions of On DurhamAn Italian Dream and Palladio’s Homes are. This year, their aim is to publish The Colours of Rome by John Sutcliffe. The following is grabbed from The Old School Press website and is tweaked for Books and Vines readers by Martyn Ould:

This title is in its early stages. John Sutcliffe is a former curator at the National Trust in England and more recently has been active as an interior decorator. His expertise in colour – in particular in an architectural setting – has been used by the company Farrow & Ball, who will be known to many for its traditional paints and artisanal wallpapers. John’s vision for the book is a survey of the colours – in limewash for the most part – to be seen on the exteriors of buildings in Rome’s centro storico, very different from those of Venice, Tuscany, Palermo, etc. If you know our books you will know we love colour, so this was a project that appealed from the outset!

John returned from another trip to Rome in late 2011 ready to work on twenty different shades of limewash and distemper. There must of course be lots of colour in the book so we shall be incorporating examples using acrylics applied directly onto the page. I suspect the paper will be a Magnani – Italian of course. The typeface will depend very much on the length and style of John’s text; a short text might get hand-set in the fine Hunt Roman that we acquired a couple of years ago from the Rampant Lions Press on its closure, or perhaps in the Dante that we used for Palladio’s Homes. A longer text would mean composition on the Monotype and then of course there would be many options – perhaps one of the larger sizes of Poliphilus italic? I’m rather partial to italics. We are also thinking about a small number of boxed de luxe copies which will come with bottled samples of the raw pigments themselves. And of course photographs are a possibility…who knows?

Edition size and price are a long way from being decided but you will be able to follow the design process via our occasional e-newsletter – if you don’t already receive it you can sign up for it at The Old School Press.

Peter Koch Printers

Mr. Koch kindly asks readers of Books and Vines to take a look at the CODEX Foundation which exists to preserve and promote the hand-made book in the broadest possible context as a work of art and to bring to public recognition the artists, the craftsmanship, and the rich history of the civilization of the book.  CODEXMEXICO is coming up in Mexico City, February 16-19, 2012.  Contact Mr. Koch at for information on that event of if you have interest in the 2013 fair.

Also, the beautiful Small Elegies by Pulitzer Prize winner and United States Poet Laureate W. S. Merwin, previously reviewed pre-release by Books and Vines here, is now available for order.

The San Francisco Chronicle recently had an article about Koch’s exquisite 2137 Tanger Socco, Letters from Paul Bowles to Ira Yeager, also recently released.

Peter Koch Printers, San Francisco Chronicle article on 2137 Tanger Socco 2137

You can see me review of 2137 Tanger Socco here.

The Whittington Press

The Whittington Press has a number of forthcoming titles, as you can review here. All look to be very nice, I will point out two in particular here.

1. Venice, by John Craig, with 35 of his wood-engravings (Spring 2013)

John Craig’s THE LOCKS OF THE OXFORD CANAL (1980) was his first book of engravings, followed in 1990 by BRITTEN’S ALDEBURGH. These two are among the most original and sought after of Whittington titles. He is now well into the engravings for VENICE, long planned and finally taking shape. Once again the typographical treatment of the book will be John’s too, so that the engravings and type harmonise as a single unit on each double-page spread. A scintillating series of double-page spreads will lead the reader through the lesser known by-ways of Venice, the narrow passages, hidden squares and waterways that often elude the casual visitor, seen through an acute architectural eye.

  • 13 x 9½ ins, about 64pp, set in 13-point Bodoni and printed on Zerkall mould-made paper with about 35 wood-engravings, and some linocuts, in an edition of 300 copies.
  • 185 copies half-bound in buckram and decorated paper sides, in a slipcase.
  • 40 copies half-bound in Oasis leather and decorated paper sides, with a portfolio of proofs of a selection of the engravings, in a slipcase.
  • 15 copies bound in inlays of Oasis leather by Lester Capon to a design by the artist, with a portfolio of engravings of the wood-engravings and linocuts, and an additional linocut, in a leather-backed solander box.

2. Pages From Presses II by David Butcher (coming in 2013)

One of the Press’ most ambitious and spectacular recent publications was David Butcher’s PAGES FROM PRESSES, published in 2006. Its notable feature was the of original leaves from the Kelmscott, Ashendene, Doves (including a vellum leaf in the special copies), Vale, Eragny and Essex House Presses. This second volume will take the story up to the Second World War and beyond, and include David’s accounts of the Golden Cockerel, Gregynog, Nonesuch, Shakespeare Head, Haslewood, Cresset and, interestingly, the Curwen Press. Once again it will be accompanied by original leaves from each Press, mounted on generously sized guards so that each side is readily accessible. These will demonstrate the varying typographical styles of the presses and show the typefaces, illustrations, decorative elements and papers they used. The original leaves chosen include some of the major works from the presses, such as the Golden Cockerel Canterbury Talesengraved by Eric Gill.

The book will be a handsome volume in its own right, printed on Czech Losin hand-made paper. The leather editions contain additional and more elaborate specimen leaves, and the full-leather edition has a separate portfolio of additional leaves. The buckram, Roma hand-made and marbled paper, and leather used for the bindings, will all be in green to complement the red used for the earlier volume, which was sold out on publication.

  • 15 ½ x 11 ½ ins, about 112 pp, set in 14-point Walbaum and printed on Czech Losin hand-made paper in an edition of 185 copies.
  • 95 copies contain 10 original leaves and are half-bound in buckram and Fabriano Roma hand-made paper, in a slipcase.
  • 40 copies contain 15 original leaves and are half-bound in Oasis leather and paper marbled by Christopher Rowlatt, in a slipcase.
  • 50 copies contain 20 original leaves, chosen to show the variety of illustration, ornament, typography and paper used by each Press, some as double-page spreads. Bound in full Oasis leather with endpapers marbled by Christopher Rowlatt, with a portfolio of additional leaves, all in a leather-backed solander box.

{Ed. Note: For 2014 News, see here.  For 2013 News, here.}

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