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[BKARTS] Freshest Advices, February 2003

Freshest Advices: February 2003
This message has been posted on the Book_Arts-L, ExLibris, and SHARP
mailing lists:

The complete schedule for Rare Book School 2003 is available on the RBS Web


Highlights: Alan Fern (retired director of the National Portrait Gallery,
Washington, DC) will be offering a new course on the history of book
illustration, and Stan Nelson will take over the current RBS course,
"Introduction to the History of Typography". The following courses will
return to RBS after an absence of one or more years: Albert Derolez's
"Latin Paleography, 1100-1500"; Johanna Drucker's "Artists' Books:
Strategies for Collecting"; Sandy Kita's "Japanese Printmaking, 1615-1868";
and Streit/Taylor's "Seminar in Special Collections Administration."  The
student evaluations of the four courses offered in the RBS January 2003
session have been posted on our Web site; all evaluations back to 1995
remain available, ibid.

The Yellow Book. The full 60-pp. RBS 2003 Course Bulletin is in the press
(this year the covers are yellow), and copies will be mailed out to the
usual suspects next week. If you are not one of them, you can request a
copy from <oldbooks@xxxxxxxxxxxx>.

Music. RBS continues to bolster its collection of materials supporting D W
Krummel's course, "The Music of America on Paper," and to this end we have
recently acquired a complete music engraver's toolkit: rasterales, burins,
dividers, scorper, burnisher, and the like, plus more than 500 punches;
composer's MS, pewter progressive plates, camera-ready copy, litho proofs,
and the final printed paper product (all showing in great detail the
details of the process, and accompanied by photographs showing the engraver
and printer at work); with dozens of blank pewter plates for student
engravers to bash away at.
    Desideratum. We greatly need sorts of letterpress mozaic music type,
and would be very grateful for any leads to acquiring same.

Autographs. Nathaniel Adams's exhibition, "The Lives of the Autograph
Collectors" has opened in the Rotunda at UVa (up through 1 May); this is
one in a continuing series of undergraduate Dome Room exhibitions in which
an UVa student take on the responsible for all aspects of a show, from
original idea through mounting and brochure or catalog copy.
    Washington Irving called autograph collectors "the musquitoes of
literature"; Adams's exhibition tells the story from the mosquito's point
of view, focusing on autograph hounds during the past two centuries
(complete with actual hounds). For more information on the exhibition, check


in a few days (information about the preceding Rotunda show, "Printed
Flowers: The Bookbindings of Margaret Armstrong" will be available until
the end of the week on the Current Rotunda Exhibition page, after which it
will be retired to the Shows 1995- page).

Lectures. The English typographer and historian Justin Howes will give a
public lecture at RBS beginning at 6 pm Monday evening, 3 March 2003, on
"Typographical Monstrosities: From Sanserifs to the Euro," in Room 201
Clemons Library. Forthcoming RBS public lectures include
9 June      John Dagenais (Dept of Spanish and Portuguese, UCLA): "Medieval
MSS in the c21."
7 July      John Bidwell (Morgan Library): "Industrial Hubris:  A
Revisionist History of the Papermaking Machine."
14 July     Greer Allen: "You See His Letters Every Day: the Tumultuous
Life & Times of Berthold Wolpe."
28 July     William Noel (Curator of MSS and Rare Books, Walters Art
Museum): "King David and His Boo0ks in the Middle Ages."
4 Aug       Leon Jackson (Dept of English, University of South
Carolina):"The Printer as Author from Franklin to Whitman."

Parchment. Last spring, the British historian and calligrapher Michael
Gullick agreed to make us a set of parchment and paper quires, pricked and
ruled in various medieval ways in preparation for writing, using (where
relevant) parchment provided to us for this purpose by Jesse Meyer (of
Richard E Meyer & Sons, Inc., Montgomery, NY, about 90 minutes by car north
of Manhattan).
    Michael Gullick consulted with Albert Derolez, Gregory Pass, and
Barbara Shailor in June 2002, visited Jesse Meyer's factory in early July,
and made up nine samples immediately thereafter, in time for Barbara
Shailor's and Roger E. Wieck's RBS courses. The samples comprise nine
quires intended to illustrate basic pricking and ruling techniques; nos 1-8
are of parchment; no. 9 is of paper.
    All but two of the parchment quires were made of whole calfskins
folded once parallel to the spine of the animal to make two bifolia (of two
leaves each) per skin, each whole skin producing four leaves. The bifolia
were then gathered in groups of four to make up quires consisting of eight
leaves. In other words, each quire required the use of two whole skins.
    We hope to commission Michael Gullick to prepare additional sets of
these parchment and paper quires, for more general sale. Let us know if
you'd like to be kept informed of our progress, with the view of purchasing
a set for your own pedagogical uses.

Terry Belanger : University Professor : University of Virginia : Rare Book
School : 114 Alderman Library : Charlottesville, VA  22903 : Telephone
434/924-8851   fax 434/924-8824   email belanger@xxxxxxxxxxxx : URL

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