The London Art Book Fair.
Latest favourite book from Otto Graphic at yesterday’s fair. If you’re going head to the first floor.
#shopping #visa #otto graphic thelondonartbookfair #printmaking #design #illustration
Thomas Wright - Scientist of the Day
Thomas Wright, an English teacher and astronomer, was born on Sep. 22, 1711. Wright was a curious duck, largely self-taught, of a mystical bent, and not by any stretch brilliant, yet capable of penetrating insights about the heavens that completely escaped his more illustrious contemporaries. He is most famous for being the first to argue that the Milky Way, that cloudy band of innumerable stars that runs entirely around the sky, is a key to determining the structure of our Galaxy. Wright did not take the next step, which was to deduce that the Galaxy must be a large thin disk of stars—that conclusion was reached by Immanuel Kant, with Wright as a guide. But Wright was the first to understand that the Milky Way is the vital clue that allows us to determine the nature of stellar systems.
Wright’s work on the Milky Way was included in a beautiful book, An Original Theory or New Hypothesis of the Universe (1750). In addition to a striking mezzotint that depicts stars (including our sun) with planetary systems (first image above), Wright also depicted the known planets and moons of the solar system in 1750 (second image above), and gave us a diagram of the solar system that demonstrates how much bigger the solar system had become, with the inclusion of the elliptical orbits of comets (third image above).
An Original Theory of the Universe was on display in our 2010 exhibition, Thinking Outside the Sphere.
Dr. William B. Ashworth, Jr., Consultant for the History of Science, Linda Hall Library and Associate Professor, Department of History, University of Missouri-Kansas City
"I can hardly describe to you the effect of these books. They produced in me an infinity of new images and feelings that sometimes raised me to ecstasy, but more frequently sunk me into the lowest dejection." Frankenstein’s Monster, Frankenstein by Mary Shelley.
Today, we wanted to share images from our Pennyroyal Press edition of Frankenstein, designed and printed with original wood engravings by print-maker Barry Moser.
Special Collections recently received the latest installment of a multi-year gift from New York collector Jerry Buff. This latest donation of over 1550 books consists mainly of fine-press and deluxe publications, considerably augmenting our collections of several American, British, and German private presses, as well as the work of important designers, publishers, and pressman. We are delighted that the donation included a number of Pennyroyal Press editions, including Frankenstein.
Each week, one of the staff members here in Special Collections chooses a book from the stacks to share. As the weeks go on, you’ll get a chance to meet everybody on staff and discover their favorite items in the collection.
This week’s staff pick was chosen by graduate assistant Hayley Jackson. She chose Victor Hugo’s much-loved Les Misérables, a five-volume set from the UWM Book Arts Collection. This particular edition, produced by the Limited Editions Club in 1938, was designed and printed by Peter Beilenson at the Walpole Printing Office in Mount Vernon.
In addition to being fond of the novel, Hayley was drawn the high quality printing and the beautifully textured wood engravings by artist Lynd Ward. While he is best known for his wordless dramatic novels, Ward was a frequent illustrator for the Heritage Limited Editions Club. Each volume of Les Misérables has a full-page wood engraving depicting the volume’s title in addition to several smaller illustrations throughout the text. The final volume was signed by Ward.
See it in the catalog here.
What’s in a banner?The images used in our banner are from the third edition of Owen Jones’s classic work “The Grammar of Ornament” (London: Bernard Quaritch, 1868). Jones, a designer and decorator primarily interested in the use of color in ornamental design (“form without colour is like a body without a soul”) was an early proponent of the use of chromolithography (“The Grammar of Ornament” was first published in 1856). The book presents hundreds of samples of color designs from across time, geography, and culture. Sample images from the book are presented here.We chose images from this book for use in our banner because we believe they represent some of the core areas of documentation at UWM’s Special Collections: history, culture, art, design, and the history of books and printing. Of course, chromolithography is also Max’s favorite printing technology.
Today marks the 53rd anniversary of the creation of the Berlin Wall, which separated the eastern and western blocs of Berlin, as well as the entire nation of Germany, for nearly 30 years. We decided to share some images from our copy of Berlin, 13. August: Spermassnahmen gegen recht und menschlichkeit. The title roughly translates to Berlin 13. August: Barriers to Law and Humanity. This book was published by the Federal Ministry of All-German Affairs in September 1961 and chronicles the events of August 13, 1961, showing images of the original barbed wire fencing and the effect of the wall on ordinary German civilians. The images of separated families trying to share special moments, such as the pictured wedding above, are particularly poignant.
See it in the catalog here.
It’s Irish Fest in Milwaukee this weekend, so we pulled James Stephens’s Irish Fairy Tales to share with you!
The book contains ten retellings of Irish folktales, many concerning the Fianna, small warrior-bands of Irish mythology featured in tales from the Fenian cycle, and their captain Fionn mac Uail (often transcribed as Finn McCool). It features sixteen color plate illustrations and several black and white illustrations from renowned illustrator Arthur Rackham. Rackham is regarded as one of the leading illustrators of the “Golden Age” of book illustration in Great Britain.
See it in the catalog here.