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Re: Artists' books in the library (fwd)

Speaking as someone who benefits from having just the type of library you
describe, I think it is a wonderful idea. It is my favourite place on
campus for the very reasons you mention.

The Bruce C. Peel Special Collections here at the University of Alberta
includes an extensive collection of book arts, artists' books, and related
work (including a lost wax process glass sculpture of an open book with a
poem cast right onto the "page"). It is a closed stack collection with very
limited off site loans (at the curators' discretion, 1 hour for class
presentations or for purposes of getting photographs done only, I think),
but you can use the books in their gorgeous old reading room, hands-on.

I mention this in particular because the curator, John Charles, actually
goes out and commissions book works. He had one of our age-damaged John
Bunyan volumes rebound by a noted book binder (can't remember who off hand)
in order to a) preserve the book and b) add another example of comtemporary
book arts to our collection. You might want to get a hold of him and get
his opinion of the relationship between him and the book artists
represented in the collection. His e-mail:


He and his staff are rare gems. Hope that helps.

>This special collection of artists books would be handled with the same
>capacity that a rare book collection would be handled. It would be a
>closed stack, meaning that no one would be able to "browse" the stacks.
>A patron would come in, request a book, and it would be brought to them
>for their perusal. The books would never leave the library, except perhaps
>in a special situation (of which I can't think of one reason right now).

Black Riders Design

  or find us on the worldwide web at http://www.blackriders.com/

 "I like to look at it, merely sit and look at it,take it all in without
moving an eye. It gives me more than rhymed poetry. It rhymes in my eyes.
   Here are Black Riders for me at last galloping across a blank page."

                          - Robert Carlton Brown
                             on his optical poem "Eyes on the Half-Shell"

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