Art of the book

Eleanor Vere Boyle was a painter and illustrator whose arresting technique was influenced by the pre-Raphaelites. Her best works were simultaneously moody, immensely detailed, and haunting. Dante Gabriel Rosetti admired her art, and called her “great in design.” She is one of the earliest woman artists to be recognized for her achievements, although she kept […]

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To the truly dedicated lover of art, the works of Maxfield Parrish rank at a culminating pinnacle. Indeed, to fix one’s gaze on Parrish’s wondrous illustrations is to escape into a magical world of whimsy, charm, and, as is characteristic of Parrish’s works, a delightful dash of humor. It should come as no surprise then, that […]

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In the introduction of Robert Frank’s landmark photography collection The Americans, Jack Kerouac described Frank’s plaintive black and white images as: “That crazy feeling in America, when the sun is hot on the streets and the music comes out of the jukebox or from a nearby funeral.” It was originally published by Robert Delpire in […]

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In 1975 in a book he called From A to B & Back Again, Andy Warhol wrote “up until a year ago I was a real nobody in Italy. I was somebody-maybe-in Germany and England-which is why I no longer go to those countries-but in Italy they couldn’t even spell my name.” Warhol must have […]

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Last weekend I had the opportunity to visit a magnificent French style chateau which is a contemporary English museum, none other than the Bowes Museum in the town of Barnard Castle, Teesdale, County Durham, England. The exhibition that drew me in is called Dreamscapes, and it will run through the summer, exploring photographer Tim Walker’s […]

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Luigi Serafini’s tribute celebration to Jules Renard’s Histoires Naturelles or The Natural Stories of the eternal vitality of natural history is a whimsical book of botanical constructions, with leaves forming a forest of enchanted trees and animated and mutant plants. This herbarium of imaginary plants comes to life in a botanical fantasy painted by the […]

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Photography is not merely a reflection of reality but more like a witness to realism. All the technical manipulations used by computer imagery, turn-tables, biochromatic  gum exposures are hopeless without photographable reality. Photography would be guilty of imposing an image of reality if it simply passed off reflections instead of visible achievements that captured a […]

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Contemporary art can be alluring for investors. Prices are soaring and the traditional cheaper alternative of investing in art works that are printed, bound, and widely offered in the form of a limited edition book, are not what they used to be. Such editions printed on better quality paper and featuring fine illustrations or even […]

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Can a first edition of a rare book be less significant than a later edition? Of course it can. What follows is   a good example of such an “anomaly.” Bibliophiles of illustrated books often argue that the art contained in illustrated books is not being viewed as comparable in appeal to wall art. They call […]

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Here is a piece of advice to all the collectors out there – next time you come across an opportunity, grab it. I am, of course, referring to the opportunity to make a purchase of a desirable rare book if and when that unexpected chance arrives. Last November at the Fine Books & Manuscripts Skinner […]

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