In this e-catalogue, we present a fairly representative cross-section of the output of the firm David Bryce & Son, which revolutionized the miniature book world around the turn of the 20th century.
Over the duration of our exhibit, “Word for Word: Four Artists in Conversation,” we have reflected on the look of language, on the parallels between the ways we see and the ways we speak and write. What is for us a source of wonder has been the central question for our current artists—Sarah Hulsey, Thomas Ingmire, Marianne Perlak, and Margaret Shepherd—and the primary pursuit of typographers and calligraphers who seek to reveal a text’s meaning by way of its own letters. With this in mind, we here offer highlights from “Word for Word” and from our own collection, setting out a landscape of letterforms rich in creativity and interpretation.
In presenting this list of new acquisitions in pop-ups and movables from a private collection, one is struck right away by the staying power of these marvels of paper engineering. What was created to provide visual entertainment in the pre-cinema age continues to find an audience in a world that is oversaturated in visual stimuli. From the peepshow, which commemorated landscapes and events in three dimensions in the 18th and 19th centuries, all the way up to modern practitioners, such as Edward Gorey, whose Tunnel Calamity shows how hard it is to ignore the proverbial elephant in the room; to the pop-up book, a format pioneered by 19th-century children’s book publishers like Dean and Sons and popularized in the 21st century by paper engineers like Robert Sabuda—the lineage that runs through this collection is like a thread that brings one of these paper sculptures to life.
For our 99th e-catalogue, we present a cross-section of Lynd Ward’s oeuvre from a small private collection. Those who have fallen under the spell Ward conjured from the dramatic interplay of light and dark in his wood engravings typically encounter it through the six wordless novels he published between 1929 and 1937. And yet, Ward illustrated more than 200 books over a half-century career. Ward imbued his spirit—the spirit of his age, of hope and resiliency, of grief and recognition—into each of his projects. As a collected corpus, such as that assembled here, they likewise portray the spirit of a life.
With the return of travel comes the expanded possibility for seeking out new treasures and pleasures to offer to our customers. The following list reflects the sort of variety we encountered in our search for the rare and the unusual.
As the days tick down to the Holidays, we’d like to take a moment to suggest the perfect solution to your gift-giving needs: Edward Gorey. We know what you may be thinking: Gorey? The artist who designed the set for Dracula on Broadway? The author of such works as The Gashlycrumb Tinies and The Beastly Baby?
The very same.
After all, this is the same Edward Gorey who also illustrated many holiday-related titles, such as Polly Redford’s The Christmas Bower, and was the playful producer of a vast zoo of beanbag figures. In fact, if one contemplates the titles of the many books he published under his name, and his many anagrammatic pseudonyms, one will find a treasure-trove of very particular objects: who, on your gift list, wouldn’t thoroughly enjoy an Improvable Landscape, a Just Dessert, or a Retrieved Locket?
Nothing says the holidays quite like Edward Gorey.
In the language of images, there are common tongues that speak in words we know—shape, line, color—about what we cannot yet understand. The generation of British artists and illustrators working at the turn of the twentieth century through the interwar period achieved such a mastery. The likes of Arthur and Georgie Gaskin, Edward Burne-Jones, Kate Greenaway, and Paul Nash drew upon the heavy lore and artistic heritage of the British Isles, the hope of the new millennium, and the grief of war after war after war. The romance of their illustrations, from Burne-Jones’s sensitive work for the Kelmscott Chaucer, exemplified in proofed and published leaves presented here, to Gaskin’s familiar countryside vistas and intimate portraits, sends pangs of longing across time to the viewer today. In this catalogue, we invite you to explore the detail and devotion with which they translated the world, and find in it both comfort and fascination.
Fable books representing all the major fabulists from Aesop to La Fontaine, illustrated by such notables as Barlow, Bewick, and Calder, and ranging in size from miniatures to folios.