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John Howell for Books

Rocket Ephemera

Rocket Ephemera

Jonathan Stephenson LIMITED EDITION of 80 sets, each of which contains 55 pieces of ephemera designed and letterpress printed by Jonathan Stephenson at the Rocket Press in Oxfordshire between 1985 & 1994. 4to Clamshell Box. 13 1/4 x 9 inches. 59 ephemeral pieces printed from the early 1980s to the mid 1990s; one piece with a crushed corner, all else in lovely condition. Housed in a clam-shell box covered in brown cloth, colophon pasted-down inside the front cover, printed paper spine, front and rear cover labels; binding square and tight. MM319-039. Fine. Different sets contain different numbers of ephemera; this set has 59, including 2 copies of Leonis Limited letterhead. Among the various pieces included here are several birth and death announcements, business cards, letterhead (one with an envelope), bookplates, announcements, invitations, menus, and much more. From 1981 to 1994, The Rocket Press was one of the few modern private presses in Britain that operated full-time. The main function of the press was to create aesthetically unique and high-quality letterpress books both under its own imprint as well as for other publishers. Ephemeral printing was also done to allow for new design challenges and to generate additional cashflow. Most notably, The Rocket Press was commissioned by McMillan Publishers, London, to print Sir John Tenniel's illustrations for Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass from the original 92 wood blocks which were discovered in the vaults of the National Westminster Bank, Covent Garden, London, in 1985.
Joan Hassall: Engravings & Drawings

Joan Hassall: Engravings & Drawings

Joan Hassall (1906-1988) and David Chambers LIMITED EDITION of 110 numbered copies, this is copy 110. 8vo. 10 x 6 1/4 inches. lxii, [2], 160, [7 pages of plates] pp. Half-title, illustrated throughout with over 470 black and white reproductions of Hassall's engravings, introductory memoir by Hassall, comments on Hassall's techniques by George Mackley, select bibliography, index of books, lists of illustrated books and journals and bookplates, eight Hassall engravings printed at the Cuckoo Hill Press, small signed chapbook in pocket at the rear; text clean, unmarked. Quarter black leather over boards with gilt trim, spine titled in gilt, patterned endpapers, mylar dust-jacket; gray-paper-covered publisher's slipcase; binding square and tight. SIGNED by Hassall on colophon and on cover of chapbook. MM219-007. Fine. The definitive account of Hassall's technique and oeuvre, by print and wood engraving scholar David Chambers who designed and printed this book at the Cockoo Hill Press. Joan Hassall was a celebrated wood engraver and book illustrator. In 1972, she was elected the first lady Master of the Art Workers Guild. In 1987, she was awarded the Order of the British Empire. This compendium includes copious illustrations by Hassall. This special edition contains eight engravings printed from the wood at the Cuckoo Press. David Chambers founded the Cuckoo Hill Press in 1959. This Chambers special edition is noted by scholars for its quality and substantial number of Hassall's illustrations.
Life on the Modjeska Ranch in the Gay Nineties

Life on the Modjeska Ranch in the Gay Nineties

Theodore Payne (1872-1963) FIRST EDITION. 8vo. 8 1/2 x 5 5/8 inches. (102) pp. Black-and-white frontispiece photographic portrait of Madame Helena Modjeska, 8 black-and-white photographic illustrations; text clean, unmarked. Green cloth, gilt spine, dust-jacket in archival mylar; binding square and tight, minor wear to jacket. INSCRIBED: "Yours Sincerely, Theodore Payne." B0118-079. Fine. Theodore Payne was an English horticulturist, gardener, landscape designer, and botanist. His best-known work was done over his adult life in Southern California. Payne arrived in California at age 221 and was in charge of the gardens on Madame Modjeska's ranch in the Santiago Canyon of Orange County. Helena Modjeska was a Polish access who specialized in Shakespearean and tragic roles. She debuted at the California Theatre in San Francisco in 1877 and gave a jubilee performance in New York City on May 2, 1905. Payne's "Life on the Modjeska Ranch in the Gay Nineties" is the best account of life in eastern Orange County in the house called Arden, which was designed by Stanford White (1853-1906). It is the only surviving home of Helena Modjeska. It was here that Payne began his life-long interest in California native plants. He is remembered today for the Theodore Payne Foundation for Wild Flowers and Native Plants, located in Sun Valley California. The Foundation promotes the understanding and preservation of California native flora by propagating plants for use by the general public and through educational programs.
A Keepsake for Alfred A. Knopf

A Keepsake for Alfred A. Knopf, Written and Printed by Various Hands Celebrating his Fiftieth Year as a Book Publisher

Charles Antin, compiler FIRST EDITION. Slip-case measures 7 15/16 x 4 7/8 inches. Fifty-one items including title-page and forward pamphlet, "List of Contributors" bifold, 49 keepsakes printed by various private presses; text clean, unmarked with the exception of the List of Contributors, which has small pencil check marks by the name of each press; LACKING the Muir Dawson and Saul Marks keepsake entitled "The Shop Rules of Christopher Plantin at the Golden Compass Antwerp," includes 2 copies of Oscar Ogg's keepsake. Also includes 1) a TLS from Charles Antin to Muir Dawson with a short calligraphic note stating that a copy of this letter was sent to Saul Marks of the Plantin Press, on The Serendipity Press letterhead, undated; 2) A TLS from Alfred A. Knopf on Alfred A. Knopf Incorporated letterhead dates July 21, 1965 thanking Muir Dawson and Saul Marks for the keepsake they contributed to this collection in the original Alfred A. Knopf mailing envelope postmarked New York, July 22, 1965. In the purple paper covered slip-case with a printed wrap-around title label; the whole nicely preserved except with occasional age-toning. Good. Charles Antin, principal at The Serendipity Press in New York City, decided to ask a number of private press printers to create this tribute to Alfred A. Knopf by asking that each print a small piece to express their appreciation for Knopf's accomplishments and to say something about his influence upon their lives. 49 fine press printers contributed, including Lewis Allen of the Allen Press; H. Richard Archer of The Hippogryph Press; Merle Armitage of the The Mohawk Press; Edna Beilenson of The Peter Pauper Press; Joseph Blumenthal of Spiral Press; Will Carter of Rampant Lions Press; Nancy Chambers, Carolyn Hammer and Harriett Holladay of The Anvil Press; Muir Dawson and Saul Marks representing The Plantin Press but their contribution LACKING here; Victor Hammer of The Stamperia Del Santuccio; Ward Ritchie of Anderson, Ritchie & Simon; Jack Stauffacher of The Greenwood Press; Roderick Stinehour of The Stinehour Press; Emerson Wulling of Sumac Press, and Hermann Zapf, among many others.
The Kelmscott & Doves Presses. An Essay by Alfred W. Pollard

The Kelmscott & Doves Presses. An Essay by Alfred W. Pollard, Presented with Leaves from the Kelmscott Golden Legend and the Doves English Bible. Calligraphy by Martin Jackson

Alfred W. Pollard (1859-1944) LIMITED EDTION of 55 copies, this is number 27, which is one of 30 copies cased in paper over boards with Martin Jackson's calligraphy printed in the text, 5 copies hors de commerce. Set in Centaur type with titling and capitals reproduced from the original calligraphy, printed on damped Arches paper. Folio. 15 1/8 x 10 inches. (28) pp. The first and last pages contain quotes by T. J. Cobden-Sanderson with large red initial letters, initials and titling throughout in red, 1 leaf from William Morris' Golden Legend [leaf uuu1, page 1025 with text on the legend of Saint Clare] and 1 leaf from T. J. Cobden-Sanderson's English Bible (Vol. 1, page 203 and 204, Numbers 13 and 14); text clean, unmarked. Blue cloth spine, decorative blue paper over boards, printed paper spine and front cover labels, decorative end-papers; binding square and tight. Fine. In this essay, Pollard assesses the question as to whether or not The Kelmscott and Dove's Presses were "private" presses and appraises the spiritual contributions to the making of good books. Pollard singles out Morris' practical use of ink, spacing, capitals and margins as an advancement in the production of fine printing, and notes how these have been improved upon since William Morris made his experiments in fine printing. Alfred William Pollard was an English bibliographer who elevated the history of Shakespearean texts. He wrote widely on a range of subjects in English literature, although among rare book collectors and dealers he is perhaps best known as co-author of the STC, A Short-Title Catalogue of Books Printed in England, Scotland, & Ireland and of English Books Printed Abroad, 1475-1640.
Scenes from the Cutting-Room Floor

Scenes from the Cutting-Room Floor

William Bentley LIMITED EDITION of 300 numbered copies and 26 lettered copies, this is number 58, SIGNED by William Bentley and initialed by John Baldessari on the colophon. 4to presented in a 3-ring binder. 11 1/2 x 10 1/4 inches. x, 214, [2] pp. Half-title, introduction by Andrew Hoyem, Glossary of screenplay terms, numerous art pieces throughout most with cut-outs as part of the designs; text clean, unmarked. Burgundy vinyl over 3-ring binder with white ink lettering and color photographs mounted on the front cover; binding square and tight. Includes the original prospectus and a promotional letter from the Arion Press. BJ519-002. Fine. Conceived, designed, and produced under the direction of Andrew Hoyem, using Monotype composition in Remington Bold and Reproducing Bold types with handset Century Schoolbook, the paper is Classic Crest, pale blue for the text and white for the illustrations which are paginated in sequence with the text, printed letterpress, the cover photograph was taken by Lucy Gray in Hollywood with an inserted photograph of John Baldessari taken in his studio. Scenes from the Cutting-Room Floor includes twenty images by John Baldessari and an original text by William Bentley. This imaginative project is unusual in that the artist first produced the artwork, which served as the inspiration for the writer. The illustrations are based on publicity stills from old movies with the actors faces removed with die-cut circles. Bentley wrote scenes that were not in the movies at all, but are to be read as rejects, the ribbons of film that ended up on the curving-room floor.
The Structure of Rime

The Structure of Rime

Robert Edward Duncan (1919-1988) LIMITED EDITION of 301 copies, this is number 22 of 275 numbered copies designed and produced at the Arion Press under the direction of Andrew Hoyem using Monotype and hand-composed Perpetua type on German mold-make Zerkall Book Laid paper, and letter press printed. 4to. 11 1/2 x 7 3/4 inches. (96) pp. Half-title, frontispiece, Introduction by Michael Palmer, 2 black-and-white photographs of the poet; text clean, unmarked. Red cloth, printed gray paper spine label, front and rear covers with a window in which appears an etching with aquatint by Frank Lodbell, slip case covered in grey paper and cloth; binding square and tight. Also included is an additional print, an etching with aquatint by Frank Lobell, SIGNED AND NUMBERED by the artist in an envelope and plastic bag as issued. Includes the original prospectus and other promotional material. BJ519-001. Fine. $ 900 The text is the first collected edition of all 31 poems in the series The Structure of Rime by Robert Duncan. Introduction by Michael Palmer. Bob Duncan was an American poet and a devotee of Hilda H. D. Doolittle and the Western esoteric tradition who spent most of his career in and around San Francisco. Though associated with any number of literary traditions and schools, Duncan is often identified with the poets of the New American Poetry and Black Mountain College. Duncan saw his work as emerging especially from the tradition of Pound, Williams, and Lawrence. Duncan was a key figure in the San Francisco Renaissance. Duncan's name is prominent in the history of pre-Stonewall gay culture and in the emergence of bohemian socialist communities in the 1930s and '40s, in the Beat Generation, and also in the cultural and political upheaval of the 1960s, influencing occult and gnostic circles of the times. During the later part of his life, Duncan's work, published by City Lights and New Directions, came to be distributed worldwide, and his influence as a poet is evident today in both mainstream and avant-garde writing. This collected volume reprints poems and other writings that first appeared from 1960 to 1988 and six poems published here for the first time. Prints by Frank Lobdell (1921-2013) included here are 3 etchings with aquatint by Frank Lobdell, 1 each appear in windows on the front and rear covers of the binding and an extra print, an etching with aquatint, printed by David Kelso and signed and numbered by the artist. The extra print is titled: "Untitled, 8.1.91" and is numbered 19/20 and SIGNED BY THE ARTIST, suitable for framing. Frank Lobdell was an American painter, associated with the Bay Area Figurative Movement and Bay Area Abstract Expressionism.