Books On Books
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Books On Books
Bookmarking the book's evolution
Curated by Robert Bolick
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Bookmark - Oliver Byrne’s "The Elements of Euclid"

Bookmark - Oliver Byrne’s "The Elements of Euclid" | Books On Books | Scoop.it
Amongst the stacks in St Andrews one can find some of the most stunning and renowned examples of mathematicians and artists collaborating or crossing boundaries to experiment largely with Euclid’s Elements and their complex problems, theorems and solutions: Luca Pacioli’s edition of Euclid and his collaboration with da Vinci in his Divina proportione, Apollonius’s Conics,…
Robert Bolick's insight:

Although it was one of the few books displayed at the Great Exhibition of 1851, Byrne's book did not sell very well. Pickering remaindered over 75% of his print run. Taschen has revived it in facsimile though, and the entire book is available from the University of Toronto.

 

But the most extraordinary aspect - beyond the beautiful Baskerville, the layout, printing and survival of this book - is Byrne's teaching of geometry in colors rather than letters and numbers.

 

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Bookmark - St. Brigid Press, "A Letterpress Lexicon, Part 1"

Bookmark - St. Brigid Press, "A Letterpress Lexicon, Part 1" | Books On Books | Scoop.it

"... one of the things that has been
exceedingly enjoyable about learning the craft of traditional printing is
learning its associated lexicon ~ the words and phrases that identify
printing's particular tools and processes.

Today's three words are CHASE, FURNITURE, and QUOIN ..."

Robert Bolick's insight:

Emily Hancock provides a definition of terms, sharp photos of the equipment and a video that brings the workings together in a brilliant "joinery" of metal, wood, bits and bytes.

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Bookmarking Book Art - Bridgette Guerzon Mills

Bookmarking Book Art - Bridgette Guerzon Mills | Books On Books | Scoop.it
Field Guides: The Secret Language of Trees
Robert Bolick's insight:

This work is installed at Lake Roland Park’s for their Art on the Trail near Baltimore, Maryland, USA. It measures about 2.5 feet tall, its pages are muslin cloth dipped in beeswax and is bound with a coptic stitch.

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Bookmark - James Bridle on Reading Right-to-Left

Bookmark - James Bridle on Reading Right-to-Left | Books On Books | Scoop.it

"At a conference I attended recently, one of the speakers noted how the US army trains observers to “read” a landscape from right to left. The idea is that, as Anglophones accustomed to reading left to right, reversing the direction of attention brings more concentration to bear on the situation. Moving from right to left disrupts the soldier’s instinctual recognition patterns, and so they are more likely to spot things.... This process ... is akin to much of our experience of new technology, when our existing frameworks of reference, both literary and otherwise, are broken down, and we must learn over once again how to operate in the world, how to transform and transliterate information, how to absorb it, think it, search for it and deploy it. We must relearn our relationship not only with information, but with knowledge itself."

 
Robert Bolick's insight:

Having just finished Rjeily"s "Cultural Connectives" ( http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1935613138), a book about the font Mirsaal designed to work well with Latin and Arabic texts, I experienced two Bridlean disconcerting wonders in this essay by James Bridle.  

 

First, do the Arab and Israeli armies train observers to read landscapes from left to right so that, challenged in their right-to-left reading habit, they are more likely to spot things?  If not, why not? If so, does it work?

 

Second, is this contrast of left-to-right with right-to-left reading, or of the radar operator's "upside down and backwards town" with "normal town", a sound or useful analogy for contrasting pre-Internet thinking with post-Internet thinking? 

 

In Alix Christie's "Gutenberg's Apprentice" (ttp://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1472220153), Peter Schoeffer, the said apprentice," straddles the divide between scriptorium and printing shop only because his foster father Johann Fust presses him on Gutenberg under the culturally received apprenticeship model. Moveable type is an abomination to the Paris-trained scribe. While we could read the technology of printing as breaking down Schoeffer's "existing frameworks of reference" - economic, political, organizational and religious - and forcing him to learn again how to operate in the world, it is the deepest human foundations of those very frameworks of reference that prod and enable him to relearn all of his relationships, not just that to knowledge. 

 

"No going backwards to the future"?  Whether it was proofreading hotmetal type at Heritage Letterpress in Charlotte, North Carolina or publishing British Standards online in London or wondering at the digitization of Lucretius De rerum naturae, I do keep coming back to that line from Theodore Roethke: "I learn by going where I have to go."

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Bookmark - The "Long tail" or the "long death march"? Richard Fisher, "The Monograph: Part One"

Bookmark - The "Long tail" or the "long death march"? Richard Fisher, "The Monograph: Part One" | Books On Books | Scoop.it
Richard Fisher looks at the past, the present and the future of monograph publishing in the humanities and social sciences.

 

"... The capacity to generate monographic paperbacks in tens and twenties, and to sell them via Amazon to scholars who could access them with relative ease, was a massive leap forward, and of course led to highly successful paperback-led revival programs (like the Lazarus program at Cambridge or Oxford’s Zombies), as those publishers with the longest tails took full advantage of the fact. This digital revalorization of print helped to ‘save the monograph’, even as unit sales of new releases continued to decline."

Robert Bolick's insight:

As the 500th anniversary of the death of Aldus Manutius, whose Renaissance publishing fortune rested on the birth of scholarly publishing, falls behind us, Richard Fisher's two-part essay in the Scholarly Kitchen might make you wonder whether we have reached the Churchillian beginning of the end or end of the beginning. 

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Bookmark - Perspectives on Hybrid Publishing, Silvio Lorusso and friends

Bookmark -  Perspectives on Hybrid Publishing, Silvio Lorusso and friends | Books On Books | Scoop.it

Technology ⇆ Society

Robert Bolick's insight:

A site worth following for insight on the impact of the Internet on what it means "to publish".

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Bookmarking Book Art - Emma Bolland

Bookmarking Book Art - Emma Bolland | Books On Books | Scoop.it
Presentation given at Livre d’Artistes: The Artist's Book in Theory and Practice, University of Cardiff, December 2015 This presentation asks a series of questions about what it might mean to categorise an object as an artist’s book, given the proximity of other categories: ‘art-writing’, or ‘the artist’s novel’ for instance. Could an artist’s book also be literature?…
Robert Bolick's insight:

In answer to this essay's last question: "Does it matter?": 

 

It depends ;-)

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TienMin Liao

Tien-Min Liao is a New York based graphic designer.
Robert Bolick's insight:

From Tien-Min Liao's "Handmade Type".

See also http://wp.me/p2AYQg-Ua.

 

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Bookmarking Book Art - Geoffroy Tory

Bookmarking Book Art - Geoffroy Tory | Books On Books | Scoop.it
Holdings of the Special Collections Department of the University of Delaware Library include books, manuscripts, maps, prints, photographs, broadsides, periodicals, pamphlets, ephemera, and realia from the fifteenth century to the present. The collections complement the Library's general collections with particular strengths in the subject areas of the arts; English, Irish, and American literature; history and Delawareana; horticulture; and history of science and technology.
Robert Bolick's insight:

Champ fleury, 1529, is the one to check out. See also http://wp.me/p2AYQg-Ua.

 

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Medieval Letter-People

Medieval Letter-People | Books On Books | Scoop.it
The human body is one of the most common objects encountered in art, whether in paintings, sculptures or other objects. Things have not changed much since medieval times, when artists loved to fill...
Robert Bolick's insight:

"The flesh made letter" - See also http://wp.me/p2AYQg-Ua.

 

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Bookmarking Book Art - The Arion Press Moby-Dick

Bookmarking Book Art - The Arion Press Moby-Dick | Books On Books | Scoop.it

"Moby-Dick, Arion Press, The Whale Watermark (note its white-ness)"

Robert Bolick's insight:

Anthony Bourdain, the American chef and television personality, has a series called Raw Craft on YouTube in which The Balvenie Distillery funds his visits and interviews to celebrate craftsmen and craftswomen. The fifth in the series takes Bourdain to "to meet with Andrew Hoyem, master typographer and printer of Arion Press. One of the last of its kind, Arion Press has only a handful of members on its staff, all fellow craftsmen dedicated to this age old process. Each works meticulously to create the books in multiple parts, from the typecasters, to the proofreaders, to the printers and the bookbinders. All of these hands build a work of art through a process that must be seen to be believed, and can only, truly, be described as magic."

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i-5NhxYRqUI&feature=youtu.be


The image above comes from Nick Long's excellent piece in "Ephemeral Pursuits", 2013: http://www.ephemeralpursuits.com/moby-dick.html


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Bookmarking Book Art - Ann Hamilton Studio

Bookmarking Book Art - Ann Hamilton Studio | Books On Books | Scoop.it

Tip of the hat to Lorcan Dempsey at OCLC.

 

Quoting from Hamilton's site:  "The nearly 50,000 paper cards we collected from the old library catalogues were used to surface three levels of the principal diagonal wall within the San Francisco Main Library building. Each card is annotated with a quote from the book described on the card, or from another book associated with that title by subject matter. Representing the diverse community that is served by the San Francisco Public Library system, nearly two hundred scribes annotated their selected cards in more than a dozen languages. This solitary process of researching, retrieving, reading, selecting, and then copying the contents of the books onto the cards was unique to each person. It represents the distinct way that each individual seeks and finds meaning in what she or he reads."

 

Now that is installation art!  

 

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Bookmarking Book Art - John Eric Broaddus

Bookmarking Book Art - John Eric Broaddus | Books On Books | Scoop.it
John Eric Broaddus was one of the most inventive and creative artists to approach the book form. He was a prominent figure in the New York City art scene in the 1970s and 1980s as a costume designer and performer but also, perhaps most importantly, as an artist creating books. Most of them were one-of-a-kind books made in an era long before the book form had even a suggestion of acceptance within the art world. Today we call this rich genre artists’ books, but when Broaddus was working in the form, he was forging new territory.
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Bookmark - The Internet of Bookish Things

Bookmark - The Internet of Bookish Things | Books On Books | Scoop.it
In a blog post for Digital Book World, Andrew Rhomberg says the Internet of Bookish Things is creating new ways to understand how readers interact with books.
Robert Bolick's insight:

In one sense, the "Internet of Things" is catching up with the Internet of eBooks. Andrew Rhomberg has kicked off a series of blogs for Digital Book World that explores that premise and more.

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Yaros Perez's curator insight, February 23, 1:05 PM

Interesante blog sobre este tema actual Internet of Things

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Bookmark - Typography and the Web

Bookmark - Typography and the Web | Books On Books | Scoop.it

Here are the top 10 most popular Web fonts of 2015—and predictions for what will be big in 2016.

Robert Bolick's insight:

The author runs a website called "Typewolf" and has been tracking the most popular onlines annually. This installment adds four alternatives to consider for each of the top ten.

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Bookmark - How the Internet changed the way we read

Bookmark - How the Internet changed the way we read | Books On Books | Scoop.it
Welcome to the age of hyper-information.

Via Luciana Viter
Robert Bolick's insight:

Having finished reading four books, binging on TV serials and movies and keeping up with email and other online over the holiday period 10 days, I know that the Internet has changed the way we read. But exactly how?  


Those four books were print. Another two on the go are digital. The movies were downloaded or streamed, and the TV serials were streamed.  I read and send almost no mail in print. Our filing cabinet at home is gone, reduced to three cardboard expandable files.


Jackson Bliss notes some of the types of additional reading that the Internet has brought us - including commentary like this. He questions whether there is much difference of quality between the Internet types and the traditional media types. But beyond the assertions, he doesn't probe closely or extensively the substantive nature of the changes (if there are any, which he calls into doubt). Worth a read though.

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Bookmark - The "Long tail" or the "long death march"? Richard Fisher, "The Monograph: Part Two"

Bookmark - The "Long tail" or the "long death march"? Richard Fisher, "The Monograph: Part Two" | Books On Books | Scoop.it
A better online reading experience remains the single greatest requirement for any significant extension in online monographic consumption. Without that, it seems to me inevitable that all major monograph publishers will be confronting an extended dual cost base, even as short-run printing spreads and inventories decline, for many, many years (decades?) to come.
Robert Bolick's insight:

As the 500th anniversary of the death of Aldus Manutius, whose Renaissance publishing fortune rested on the birth of scholarly publishing, falls behind us, Richard Fisher's two-part essay in the Scholarly Kitchen might make you wonder whether we have reached the Churchillian beginning of the end or end of the beginning.

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Bookmark - Hack the Book Festival (but don't torture the language, please?)

Bookmark - Hack the Book Festival (but don't torture the language, please?) | Books On Books | Scoop.it

#BookDesign: What kind of an object a book is [sic]? How do the physical object and its digital extensions merge into a new hybridity? Which is the aesthetic experience that we want to invoke to [sic] the user/reader? How could we use smart materials in order to construct a hybrid phygital object?
#OpenHardware: how can you address the object-environment interaction through your design? How can you use Arduino or RasberryPi  to its full potential so as to place the book as part of an interactive network of objects  that provide the user with a coherent operation [sic] experience?
#API: how can you connect the object or the cluster of objects that you have created to open data and Europeana’s content. How can you implement the application programming interfaces (APIs) and the programming tools provided by Europeana?

Robert Bolick's insight:

"Phygital" sounds like a painful condition requiring "digisical surgery".

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Bookmarking Book Art - Bruno Munari

Bookmarking Book Art - Bruno Munari | Books On Books | Scoop.it
A Kindle is no match for the Italian artist and graphic designer's mixed-media tomes.
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Bookmarking Book Art - "Casa dei Libri" by Livio De Marchi

Bookmarking Book Art -  "Casa dei Libri" by Livio De Marchi | Books On Books | Scoop.it
Robert Bolick's insight:

Books do more than furnish this room.  They are the room - and the house. This comes from the poet and broadcaster Luca Rota's "Intervallo". The best picture of the house that Livio De Marchi has carved and compiled is on Rota's site, and there is a YouTube clip as well. 

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Bookmarking Book Art - Francois Robert

Bookmarking Book Art - Francois Robert | Books On Books | Scoop.it
Os designers Francois Robert e Rick Valicenti uniram-se , e o poder da criatividade multiplicou-se...
Francois criou um alfabeto feito de ossos para a...
Robert Bolick's insight:
Bonemade letters in a plea to "Stop the Violence".
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Mysteries of Vernacular

Mysteries of Vernacular | Books On Books | Scoop.it
Robert Bolick's insight:

A series of films making up an etymological alphabet book. Try out "W is for window". See also http://wp.me/p2AYQg-Ua.

 

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Bookmarking Book Art - Wilber Schilling

Bookmarking Book Art - Wilber Schilling | Books On Books | Scoop.it
Henry James wrote the novella The Beast in the Jungle in 1903. First published as part of a collection called  The Better Sort, The Beast in the Jungle came to be considered one of his best works. ...
Robert Bolick's insight:

In his series of essays at "Books and Vines", Chris T. Adamson provides fresh, personal and insightful comments on fine book productions and their content such as Henry James' "The Beast in the Jungle" from the Lewis and Dorothy Allen Press in 1963.  An oenophile, as the title of his series suggests, Adamson also occasionally offers tips on the best wines with which to decant and read these works.

 

James is a favorite author at "Books On Books" as is Herman Melville. Indulge the punning coincidence of being introduced to Wilber Schilling's Indulgence Press and his edition of Melville's "Bartleby the Scrivener: A Story of Wall Street".  Schilling is more than a producer of fine press books: he is a book artist. His edition of "Bartleby", with Suzanne Moore's original hand lettering of Bartleby’s classic “I would prefer not to” statement first appearing fully legible and becoming larger until it literally falls off the bottom of the final page, is more than a fine press edition: it is book art.


Consider also Schilling's "Half Life/Full Life" and its meaningful binding with a variation on Hedi Kyle's and Claire Van Vliet's accordion/flag structure (http://www.indulgencepress.com/Books/Half_Life.html). 

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Bookmarking Book Art: OCLC prints last library catalog cards

Bookmarking Book Art: OCLC prints last library catalog cards | Books On Books | Scoop.it
OCLC printed its last library catalog cards today, officially closing the book on what was once a familiar resource for generations of information seekers who now use computer catalogs and online search engines to access library collections around the world.
Robert Bolick's insight:

More a bookmark for the evolution of libraries than the evolution of the book?  Like discarded books recycled for book art, library catalog cards have found a new life in art at the University of Iowa's cARTalog: http://sdrc.lib.uiowa.edu/exhibits/cartalog/gallery.htm

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