Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Online bookbinding exhibition

The current exhibition at the de Beer Gallery, University of Otago, 'From Pigskin to Paper: The Art and Craft of Bookbinding' is now online. The physical exhibition runs until 22 March 2013 and was covered in a previous blog post (20 November 2012).

The online exhibition like the physical one, uses a wide selection of book illustrating the range of bookbindings in the collection. Materials include early pigskin and vellum bound books, Cambridge-style examples, a Louis XIV binding, publishers' bindings, works by the New Zealand binder Eleanor Joachim (1874-1957) and some Dunedin binders.

Ref: AWNS-19011017-9-7, Sir George Grey Special Collections
The online exhibition is not arranged in themed sections. Rather it is pictorially arranged like a visual bookcase. Jewel like images of items included in the online exhibition offer tantalising glimpses. By clicking on these gems, you are rewarded with a larger sized image and more information about that particular book or bookbinding theme.

Ref: Sample of the books on the online bookbinding exhibition
One of the highlights of the exhibition is a bible bound by Rood and Hunt Binder in around 1482. Not only is this the earliest English binding in New Zealand but the sewing guards include fragments of indulgences printed by William Caxton in Westminster in around 1480, and John Lettou (London), after 1480. These fragments were discovered in the 1980s by Christopher de Hamel.
Ref: Example of book details ('Poetical works of Sir Walter Scott') on the online bookbinding exhibition

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