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E-catalogue 100: Movable and Pop-up Books

E-catalogue 100: Movable and Pop-up Books

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.