(BEWICK). Bewick, Thomas. Autograph letter signed, Newcastle, 13 July 1819.13 lines plus date, address, salutation, felicitation and signatue. To H.Hewitson Esq. Single sheet folded at center. Slight splitting to fold, overallclean and perfectly legible. Bewick letters are quite rare.
Bewick collects a debt. "Understanding that it is your intentionshortly to pay a visit to your friends at Norwich, I take the liberty oftroubling you with the enclosed small bill [no longer present] upon my friendMr. Hooker, which you will be so good as to receive for me..."
(KOCH, RUDOLF). Koch, Rudolf.Das Blumenbuch. Ernst Ludwig Press, Darmstadt, 1929-30. First edition, one of135 copies. Small folio. This copy belonged to George Schlosser, to whom it waspresented by the press. It is bound in full vellum with a laced spineconstruction, and has two elaborate flower paintings by the illustrator WilliHarwerth--that on the spine bears his monogram. 3 preliminary leaves; 250magnificent hand-coloured plates, engraved by Fritz Kredel after drawings byRudolf Koch, each captioned with plant name; 8 terminalleaves of indices andcolophon. The spine is slightly soiled, with some rubbing and slight pigmentloss. Housed in the original paste-paper slipcase.
The Ernst Ludwig Press was the private press of the Grand Duke Ernst Ludwig,and was founded in 1907. With the Cranach and Bremer presses, it stands at thepinnacle of the German private press movement. The Blumenbuch is generallyconsidered the finest accomplishment of the press. It was the firstcollaboration between Rudolf Koch and Fritz Kredel, and was Kredel's firstmajor book commission. His style of wood engraving, based on that of theItalian Renaissance, lends the book a stateliness that harkens back to theherbals of the sixteenth century. It is a magnificent accomplishment, and oneof the finest twentieth century private press/illustrated books. Willi Hawerth,whose centenary was in 1994, was a friend and colleague of Koch's at theOffenbacher Werkstatt, and was a renowned illustrator in his own right. Hepainted several similar bindings on Das Blumenbuch, all apparently forpresentation to friends of the press, including one for Karl Klingspor, now inthe Klingspor Museum.
(RUZICKA, RUDOLPH). Eaton, Walter Prichard. New York. A series of woodengravings in colour and a note on colour printing by Rudolph Ruzicka withprose impressions of the city by... The Grolier Club, N.Y., 1915. Firstedition, one of 250 copies. 8vo, buckram-backed boards, 120 pp., with tenfull-page plates and twenty head- and tail-pieces in color wood engraving byRuzicka. Minute wear to ends of spine, else about fine. Quite scarce.
A gloriously atmospheric series of illustrations, reminiscent of the colorwood engravings of Paris by Lepere in A Rebours, which surely must haveinspired Ruzicka. One is left surprised at how light and spacious the city was,before the high-rises cast their long shadows. This is among the finest artistbooks on the subject of Manhattan. Artist & the Book 273.
(CRANACH PRESS). Canticum Canticorum Salomonsis. Cranach Press, Weimar,1931. One of 200 copies on Maillol-Kessler paper (also 60 on Japan and 8 onvellum). Tall 8vo, vellum spine, buff paper sides, slipcased. 32 pp., witheleven wood engravings and eighteen pictorial initials cut on wood by EricGill. Slipcase with light wear and soiling, otherwise a lovely copy of a veryscarce book.
This is one of the most successful books of the press Evan Gill 284.Müller-Krumbach 56.
(KELMSCOTT PRESS). Morris, William. Child Christopher and Goldilind theFair. The Kelmscott Press, Hammersmith, 1895. First edition, one of 600 papercopies. 2 vols., 16mo, bound in holland-backed boards. 132 ff.; 124 ff.,printed in the Chaucer type, with borders, initials etc. cut on wood after thedesigns of Morris. Some slight soiling and darkening, a very good set.
Morris considered this work "quite the most charming things issued frommy press." Peterson A 35.
(JONES, DAVID). Isaacs, J.--ed. The Chester Play of the Deluge. GoldenCockerel Press, Waltham St, Lawrence, 1927. One of 275 copies. Small folio,original red cloth, iv, 16 pp., colophon, including ten large wood engravingsby David Jones. Some loss to jacket, slight wear to head of spine, bookplate,in all a very presentable copy.
The last of three books with illustrations by Jones published by the press,and clearly one, if the tenor of the description in Chanticleer is taken asindicative, towards which Sandford had equivocal feelings. "Tastes differ.In the opinion of some the engravings in this book are the greatest graphicachievment of the Press. They are, however, very poorly printed in thebook." Chanticleer 59.
(JONES, DAVID). An original wood-block engraved by David Jones, presumablybox- or pear-wood, 3 ¼" x 2 ¼", makeready still mounted toback. The engraving is of an angel and devil wrestling over fire and can befound in Libellus Lapidum. It therefore dates from his St. Dominic's period.The block is in good condition and would appear to be still printable. Examplesof woodblocks by Jones are quite rare.
A fine block with a memorable image dating from 1924 or before. Cleverdon75. For the book, see Taylor & Sewell A125.
(JONES, DAVID). Swift, Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World InFour Partsby Lemuel Gulliver. The Golden Cockerel Press, Waltham St. Lawrence,1925. One of 30 copies only printed on hand-made paper and signed by DavidJones, the artist. There were also 450 copies on machine-made in a differentbinding. Illustrated with numerous wood engravings by David Jones, manyhand-colored (in this issue, quite possibly by the artist). A fine set, veryrare in this form.
The regular issue of this great illustrated Gulliver is a disappointingaffair as the paper is poor and the binding subject to severe wear. In theissue on hand-made paper the illustrations can be seen to full advantage. Withthe rare prospectus.
(SCHMIED, F. L.). Wilde, Oscar. Deux Contes. F.-L.Schmied, Paris, 1926. one of 150 copies signed by Schmied (plus twelve forcollaborators). Small folio, original printed wrappers in chemise and slipcase.Since neither Nasti nor Ritchie provides a collation. one follows here.Wrappers with design of a dying bird in silver. 46 ff., unsigned. 3 blank ff.,half-title, v. blank; frontis., v. tirage statement; title leaf, v. blank;section title for first story (Le Prince Heureux), v. blank; frontis. to story,v. blank; xxix, final verso blank, one full page plate hors texte (oppositexx), vertical non-repeating bandeaux in gold and colors on every page; platelist, with cut of the nightingale, v. blank; list of plates, 2 pp.; title forLe Rossignol et la Rose; frontis., v. blank; xxv pp., including one full pageillustration hors texte opposite p. xx, horizontal non- repeating bandeaux ingold and colors throughout; plate list (with cut); 2 pp. plate list; colophonleaf signed by Schmied, with ornament, 3 blank ff. 58 illustrations, includingfour hors texte; two elaborate initials. Slipcase and chemise are both quiteworn. Covers rather browned (as usual) from contact with the acid card of thechemise. A scarce Schmied title.
The last book printed by Schmied on the hand-press, and the last in whichthe production was handled by Schmied himself. Henceforth he moved to newquarters and purchased several platen presses. His son, Théo, superviseda team of engravers, relieving Schmied of that laborious rask.. The project,initiated by the French foreign minister Louis Barthou (a great collector ofmodern bindings and illustrated books), Jacques André, Charles Miguetand Frank Altschul (of the Overbrook Press) is a marvel of ingenious design andornamentation. Ritchie 18; Nasti 20.
(ERAGNY PRESS). White, Diana. The Descent of Ishtar.The Eragny Press,Hammersmith, 1903, sold by John Lane. One of 10 copies on real vellum. Tall12mo, bound in full olive morocco with green vineleaf onlays by Zaehnsdorf. 32pp., printed in red, black and olive green with woodcut borders cut by EstherPissarro after Lucien Pissarro's designs. The splendid title-page cut was byDiana White herself, engraved by Esther. Some fading to binding, overall a verygood copy indeed.
A typically charming Eragny book, in this instance one of the rare vellumcopies. Woodcut prints extremely well upon vellum, giving rich, lustrous areasof black. The illustration by Diana White, with its withered trees andattenuated figures, is clearly influenced by Jugendstil artists such as Klimtand Kandinsky.
(GOLDEN COCKEREL). The Four Gospels of the Lord Jesus Christ... The GoldenCockerel Press, Waltham St. Lawrence, 1931. One of 500 copies. Folio, buckramsides, pigskin spine and corners by Sangorski & Sutcliffe. 269 pp. on heavyhand- made paper, with sixty-four illustrations and initial letters, printed inthe 18-point Golden Cockerel type designed by Gill for the press (first usedwith this book). The spine is slightly dulled but the cloth of the boards isentirely fresh and unspotted, unusual as the acid adhesive used almost alwayscauses scattered discoloration.
Beyond dispute, one of the greatest English illustrated books of thetwentieth century. The harmony between Gill's superb wood-cuts and the heavytype of his own design is well-nigh perfect. Chanticleer 78. Evan Gill 285.
(JONES, DAVID). Cleverdon, Douglas. The Engravings of David Jones. ASurvey. Clover Hill Editions, London, 1981. One of 105 copies of the specialissue: in addition, there were six copies on vellum, 260 copies on velind'Arches, and in addition 75 sets of the portfolio were separately issued. Thepresent issue is printed on hand-made Barcham Green paper, and is slipcasedwith the portfolio of prints on Japan. 2 vols., small folio, in case as noted.Text volume with leather- backed boards over green cloth, portfolio backed incloth to match the leather of the text volume, green cloth sides. 58pp. text,followed by 96ff. of reproductions (printed one side of the leaf only). Theportfolio contains 96 separate sheets on Japan, plus a group of prints fromcopper plates, printed on hand-made paper. As new.
A very impressive and important catalogue of the work of Jones, the bestwork on his engravings to date. According to the prospectus, of 129 engravings,77 are printed from the original blocks or plates. Price of publication was$1000.
(MACKLEY, GEORGE). Colt, Armida Maria-Theresa. Weeds and Wild Flowers. SomeIrreverent Words. The Two Horse Press, London, n.d. (1965), One of 250 copiessigned by Mackley. Two vols., slipcased, cloth spines, Japanese paper sides.4to. Vol. i: 54 pp., printed by Will Carter. Vol II: Portfolio of prints byMackley. A fine set. Scarce.
George Mackley was an accomplished engraver of pastoral and botanicalsubjects (though by profession a teacher) and author of Wood Engraving(1948).
(STONE, REYNOLDS). Thomas, R. S. The Mountains. Chilmark Press, N.Y., 1968.First edition, one of 110 copies Roman numbered copies (ex 350 in total),signed by John Piper, Reynolds Stone and the author. 4to, publisher'sleather-backed boards, 42 pp., with ten wonderful drawings of the Welsh hillsby John Piper, rendered in wood-engraving by Stone. As called for, this copyhas an extra, tipped-in, suite of the engravings. Fine in slipcase.
A very striking book. The combined talents of Piper and Stone meshed toproduce impressive results. This is remarkably painterly wood engraving, and isreminiscent of the extraordinary productions of Timothy Cole, whose worksimilarly interpreted the easy flow of brush strokes into his own difficultmedium. The superb printing and typography is from the Carters at the RampantLions Press.
(WOODCUT). The Woodcut. An Annual. The Fleuron, London, 1927-1930. Firstedition, limited to no more than 700 sets. 4 vols., 8vo, original cloth-backedboards (with Curwen patterned paper sides). Occasional foxing to endpapers butan excellent set in the dust-jackets.
The best publication on the art of wood engraving in England betweenthe wars.
(TURMPRESSE). We offer a collection of the series Dichter aller Volker undZeiter, consisting of the first nine publications in this series (of twentypublished finally). Each pamphlet is a large folio (50.5 x 34 cm.), of 14 pp.,with every page bearing the remarkable hand-colored woodcut designs of theartist and printer Karl Lorenz. Each example is one of 30 copies, irregularlynumbered as copy no. 2. The plates are frequently signed by Lorenz. Those textspresent are as follows: Von Mohr, J. Stille Nacht, Heilige Nacht... Goethe, J.W. von. Ins Siebenthe Jahr... Humboldt, W. von. Der Zware Weck des Menschen...Brockes, B. H. Drierlei Violen. ``Silesius, A.'' [Scheffler, J.] Nichts ist,was... Nietzsche, F. Vor Sonnen, Aufgang... Kleist, H. von. Wehe, meinVaterland. Korner, Th. Wie wir so treu besamemn... Heine, H. Das Meer. Thesebooks were published as part of the Weinachts Paket 1930; each is crudelyprotected by a heavy card wrapper on which the name of the author is written inpencil, evidently by Lorenz. Accompanying the nine parts is a matching newpaper folder containing ten folio proof sheets, each with hand-coloured textand illustrations, with additional annotations by Lorenz. All of this materialis contained within a massive cedar case of recent construction, with agilt-stamped leather label. Apart from some trivial defects, everything is inunusually fine condition.
Very rare indeed. Little is recorded about the work of Karl Lorenz at hisTurmpresse, but it is abundantly obvious that he was very idiosyncratic talentindeed. Rodenberg, writing in "The Woodcut," volume III says"...his art of cutting wood shows the gnarled, rather stubborn, butsincere manner of the North German... Those whose conservative mind will onlyadmit the beauty of mediaeval `old face' as the most perfect form of characterwill find little to appeal to them in the woodcut lettering of Karl Lorenz,though he continues to experiment in his many woodcut publications... What issurprising in this manner of cutting lettering on wood is that, in spite of anapparent freakishness--he cuts directly without drawing on the block--there isa distinct discipline, a command of the line in which the illustration seemsalmost to have frozen into stylized ornament."
Indeed, his illustrations, crude and vital, are less Expressionist in mode thanthey are forerunners of Dubuffet and l'Art Brut. Lorenz operated from 1924 atMalente-Gremsmuhle in Holstein, clearly as a one-man operation. The littleinformation that is available comes from Rodenberg's Deutsche Pressen, EineBibliographe, Zurich, 1930, that contains a check-list and brief biographicalnotes. Perhaps significantly, Rodenberg's list shows only items 10-15 and 19-20of this particular series, and none of the present volumes.