The selection of these twenty-four wood-engravings by Lucien Pissarro, mostly done for his Eragny Press, is based on a pastoral theme, at which he excelled. They are printed from the original boxwood blocks, kindly lent to us by the Ashmolean Museum, and printed on some of the last remaining stock of Joseph Batchelor’s hand-made paper, made to William Morris’ specification, some of which has been generously given to us by the Morgan Library and Museum in New York, where it has lain for over a century.
The book contains an introduction by John Bidwell on the opriginas of the Batchelor paper, and a memoir by Miriam Macgregor of her grandfather, the artist Archie Macgregor, Pissarro’s close friend and neighbour. The edition consists of 300 copies:
10 x 7 ins (the formats very slightly with each edition, reflecting the sizes of the three papers), 80pp, set in Caslon type.
160 copies on Batchelor’s Crown and Sceptre paper, quarter-bound in pre-war Fabriano Ingres printed sides, in a slipcase. £145
100 copies printed on Batchelor’s Flower paper made originally for the Kelmscott Press, with a set of proofs of the engravings, and one additional engraving. £265
40 copies printed on Batchelor’s Otter paper, bound in full gold-blocked vellum with silk ties, marbled endpapers, with a set of proofs of the engravings, and one additional engraving. £650
Andrew Anderson’s astonishing linocuts are an arresting mix of image, lettering and symbolism. The images show strong influences of his background as an architect with a particular interest in mediaeval architecture; the lettering brings Eric Gill to mind, but with an added fluency and versatility; and much of the symbolism comes from his involvement with cathedral and church architecture. He has written about his work in MATRIX 28, pp. 9–14.
He combines these three elements with immense skill and with a rare dedication, and yet his images have an astonishing vibrance and magnetism. Little known or seen over the years, hampered perhaps because of their size and the artist’s preoccupation with his architectural work, they appear here for the first time in a readily accessible form, each with a note by the artist explaining its content and symbolism.
The large format of A VISION OF ORDER allows most of the prints to be tipped in unfolded. Like our Posters published in 1996, it will be a monumental volume in its own right, set in a large size of the Caslon type for which the Press has become renowned.
24 x 16½ ins, 64 pp, set in 22-point Caslon and printed on a heavyweight Zerkall mould-made paper, the prints printed on Zerkall Inges and tipped in, in an edition of 185 copies.
150 copies quarter-bound in buckram and printed paper sides, in a slipcase. £335
35 copies are similarly bound, with a portfolio of a selection of the prints, including The Rock of Cashel, nine sheets joined together to form an image measuring 4 ½ x 3 ft (see Matrix 28, p. 13), in a solander box with gold-blocked leather spine. £765
A TALENT FOR FRIENDSHIP
This short book is based on the account of his mother’s life that John Randle gave at her funeral in 2008. Printed in the main for family and friends, we have kept a few copies for our regular subscribers. It is printed on the last of the small stock of paper made for Lord Amherst in 1898, containing his magnificent coat of arms as its watermark, which we acquired from Oxford University Press in 1986.
9 x 6 ½ ins, 24 pp., set in 14-point Caslon and printed in an edition of 100 (unnumbered) copies.
50 copies soft-bound in the now discontinued Fabriano Roma hand-made paper, with matching Fabriano Ingres endpapers, in a slipcase. £45
50 copies full bound in Oasis leather, blind blocked on the front board, silver tops, marbled endpapers, in a slipcase. £185
11 x 7 ½ ins, 20 double-page spreads, alternately of full colour images printed by the artist on heavyweight Zerkall chamois geglattet mould-made paper, and 24 point Caslon type printed on Somerset mould-made paper, in a threadless, cased zig-zag binding, in an edition of 350 copies.
225 copies in a decorated slipcase. £145
125 copies with a portfolio of signed prints of the images, including an additional print, and a 24 x 36 in. poster of one of the images, all in a
In May 2010 Barbara Henry came to spend a week at the Whittington Press. She knew her way around pretty well as she had come two years earlier to make a film for the Center for Book Arts in New York, which can now be seen on our website. We gave her a case of Caslon type, some linocutting tools, and the use of the Fag proof press, and she set to work in her usual focussed way to print a broadside, Using Eth and Thorn. There was also a little time to visit a few other printing friends. Imagine our surprise when a copy of this book arrived a week or two later, designed and printed on the web, a tribute to the marvels of modern technology. It forms a snapshot of a week’s activity at the Press, taken by Barbara with fifty evocative photographs and a hundred simply chosen words. We decided to print a few more for friends and customers of the Press, with an added letterpress introduction, signed by the protagonists.
9 x 11 ins, 24 full-colour pages, case-bound with colour dust-jacket, with a 4pp letterpress insert, in a slipcase, 65 copies. £65
Shortly afterwards the blocks themselves came to light, when it was realised that the non-appearance of the engravings had been a double tragedy, for on the reverse of the blocks were parts of other much larger engravings done by Rachel before the war. Due to the wartime shortage of boxwood she had sawn the blocks down to less than half size.
Lost and Found will show all sixteen of the blocks for The Mill on the Floss for the first time, as well as reconstructing the larger palimpsest images on the reverse of the blocks. As Hal Bishop remarked in MATRIX 26, ‘Despite the loss of the short central section of each block, Rachel’s compositional whole is easily reconstructed by the eye.’
10 ½ x 7 ½ ins, 112 pp, set in 14-point Van Dijck, the text printed on cream Hahnemuhle mould-made and the engravings on a special making of smooth Zerkall mould-made for the engravings, in an edition of 225 copies.
THESE LETTERS WHERE WRITTEN BY Myfanwy Thomas, ‘daughter the younger’ of the poet Edward Thomas, to her Japanese friend and Thomas scholar Masatsugu Ohtake, for whom we undertook this unusual project. The book charmingly records, first tentatively and then more familiarly, Masatsugu’s admiration for Thomas, and Myfanwy’s pleasure in the interest that was shown in her father’s work on the other side of the world. It contains twenty wood-engravings by Hellmuth Weissenborn, who engraved the illustrations for the Press’ THE DIARY OF EDWARD THOMAS, 1 January to 8 April 1917, published in 1977, and a foreword by Richard Emeny, secretary of the Edward Thomas Fellowship and friend of both Myfanwy and Masatsugu.
The book is hand-set and printed in an edition of 100 copies on a special making of Kozo hand-made paper, made from a single mulberry tree. Masatsugu has allowed us to keep 50 copies for sale, which we have full-bound in a specially smooth making of ochre Oasis goatskin, with matching marbled endpapers by Christopher Rowlatt, and with a separate portfolio of proofs of the engravings printed in black. The copies are signed by Masatsugu in Japanese calligraphy, and stamped with his seal. Eight copies of this delicately made book are still available at £265.
The topics covered by MATRIX 29 include the Hunt type designed by Hermann Zapf (with a specimen of the type in its three sizes on mould-made paper); wood-engravings from a pilgrimage to the south of France; the Firefly Press in Massachusetts; the Architectural Review; Monotype at the Bixlers’; wood-type in America; David Godine, the Letterpress Years; Stinehour Press; Tirzah Ravilious; letterpress in Brazil; Robert Harling; Scotch Roman; the Occasional Print Club; Italian Futurist types; the creative possibilities of ad hoc letterpress printing; the golden age of 1960’s publishing; and an item currently being vetted by MI5. A particular feature of MATRIX 29 will be the many letterpress inserts from around the world (Italy, USA, Canada, Brazil, UK).
11 x 7½ ins, about 200 pp, 630 copies case-bound in light boards £135
70 copies quarter-bound in Oasis goatskin and marbled papers, with a separate portfolio of additional material, in a slipcase, £365
‘Matrix … a clear and spacious attic, whose dormer windows overlook fields and trees, and in which one comes across new or forgotten, sometimes exotic, treasures.
‘… that annual miracle.’ THE BOOK COLLECTOR
‘Matrix describes doings by people with great skill. But the real, and enduring strength and greatness is there is not a whisper of greed or commercialism.’ WILLIAM MASLAND, ARIZONA
Hello again Rosalind, … I woke up tonight and panicked – I thought Matrix 29 should have been out already and that I missed it!! What a nightmare … Anyway, I look forward to it, now that I have calmed down...
This richly illustrated issue comes with samples of the scintillating papers from Cave Papers in Minneapolis; descriptions of, and colour-engravings from, Abigail Rorer’s Mimpish Squinnies, Gaylord Schanilec’s Sylvae, and Geri Waddington’s of the Dordogne; accounts of the surreal world of Adanaland, with a perforated sheet of the local stamps; Andrew Anderson’s recently rediscovered posters; Lee Miller’s photographs of Egypt; Howard Bratter’s Woodside Press in Brooklyn; a visit to Joseph Cribb in Ditchling in 1955; Jane Grabhorn’s Jumbo Press in San Francisco; and Hilary Pepler’s The Hand Press. The variety and zest of MATRIX 27 mirrors that of the rest of the series. With the usual fold-outs, tip-ins and sew-ins from printers around the world. A few copies of the regular edition are still available.
Quarter bound in Oasis leather and marbled papers, with a separate folio of photographic prints, £335 [out of print]
This eclectic and engaging Aga cook book was first published in 1984, and went through five editions. Thinking it had sold out, we forgot about it until the Fine Bindery had a sort out and found another 200 sets of sheets from the 1996 edition. These they have bound up, and suddenly Randle family life of 25 years ago has sprung to life again in Judith Verity’s wonderfully zestful linocuts of piles of nappies on the Aga, a child blowing out three candles on his birthday cake, Rose searches the freezer in vain for more food and picks up windfalls with the dog, while the guinea pigs argue over a lettuce leaf. In between are some excellent recipes, all written by a cook who doesn’t care to spend too much time on preparation. To judge by the prices now asked for the first edition (bound in tartan worsted) this may become a cook book classic (we recently saw a copy advertised as ‘with a rare signature by Rosalind Randle’).
7 ½ x 5 ins, bound in printed cotton, £25