Monday, December 2, 2019

Bookbinding Materials Swatches, Con't

I'm continuing to go through my old trade manuals and journals scanning the materials swatches that were so often included. This time the swatches are from "L. Brade's Illustriertes Buchbinderbuch," edited and reworked by Paul Kersten in 1921. The closest edition available in Hathitrust is from 1916, but is lacking the materials samples and advertising.

The swatches themselves were provided by various workshops and wholesalers, included the contact information, and were mounted on different stocks for whom contact information was also provided.

Enjoy!




Marbled with colors by Paul Szigrist, Leipzig.

Marbled with colors by Paul Szigrist, Leipzig.

Printed and batik artists' papers from the firm of Hanns Doenges, Wiesbaden.

Papers sold by Wilhelm Leo's Successors, Stuttgart.

Hand-colored papers from Künstlerpresse, Dresden.

Hand-colored papers from Künstlerpresse, Dresden.

Endpapers, some decorative from Wilhelm Valentin, Berlin.

Endpapers, some decorative from Wilhelm Valentin, Berlin.

Sunday, December 1, 2019

David Bourbeau's Wizard of Oz

I've long been enamored with the work of David Bourbeau, and had to jump at the chance to acquire this design idea for a binding on Barry Moser's Pennyroyal Press edition of the Wizard of Oz dated 6.6.'04. Sadly, he was never able to execute the binding as he passed 8/22/2009. Barbara Blumenthal wrote a wonderful "in memoriam" for him in The Bonefolder, vol. 6, nr. 1, fall 2009. From the "in memoriam:"

He was introduced to the art of the book by Leonard Baskin, and in 1972 he sold his business and took a two-year apprenticeship with master bookbinder [and Wiemeler student] Arno Werner. In 1975 he established the Thistle Bindery, located at various times in Northampton, Easthampton, and Florence, and in 1977 he took on the first of his many students and apprentices. 
A consummate bookbinder, he designed and constructed strong, innovative bindings for fine press books while also working in book restoration and art conservation. Having coined the word “bibliotect,” or book-architect, he observed that a binding “is not merely a fancy cover, the facade, but all of the elements, seen and unseen, that form the foundation and structure of the book.” This is borne out in his many organically unified editions, among them Poe’s The Raven, with graceful wing-like forms emerging from a raven-black binding, and Robert Francis’s posthumous collection Late Fire, Late Snow, whose handmade paper cover contains gold-tooled lines representing the shape of the title poem. Both of these books were bound using fine papers, a bookbinding material championed by David.

The Raven as bound by David Bourbeau.
Bound in full paper over boards with cloth spine reinforcement; sewn on three
linen tapes; leather wrapped headband; the marbled paper cover was designed by the binder
 "to resemble ravens' wings"; the papers were editioned by Steven Auger who
learned to marble from the binder. 8.5 x 28 x 2 centimeters. Created 1980.
Image from the catalog of the 100th Anniversary Exhibition of the Guild of Book Workers.

His design for The Wizard of Oz would have been executed similarly, except instead of being full paper it would have had a black Niger goat spine and fore-edge trim with the design being executed as a paste paper. The titled would have been tooled from the title page using "gold dots within the emerald light opening  in the black clouds."


Design sketch and technical specifications for David Bourbeau's design for the
binding of The Wizard of Oz.

Below Bourbeau's concept for the cover design using a unique paste paper. As in the case of the Raven, a design binding need not be full leather or vellum.


As an aside, a copy of Bourbeau's The Raven that was bound in an edition of 100 copies for sale (125 total) is available from The Veatchs Arts of the Books. It is on my bucket list.

So, how do you approach the design of your bindings?