The Limited Editions Club: Art from the Collection of James and Marilynn Alcott
November 3, 2017 – January 21, 2018
Cowles Literary Commons, Open Book 2nd Floor
Curated by Sara Ludewig
Free and open to the public
The Limited Editions Club was founded in 1929 by publisher and book lover, George Macy. Macy’s mission was to produce beautiful, illustrated editions of classic pieces of literature. Each text was produced in 1,500 copies and signed by the illustrator before being sent to club members twelve times per year. Macy was meticulous about the design of each title, hiring the best illustrators, designers, and typographers to create original work. Each title was uniquely crafted, printed from original type and engravings, and used fine papers and cover materials.
During the Great Depression, the Limited Editions Club provided employment to a number of artists and illustrators struggling to find regular work. The Limited Editions Club published 548 titles between the years 1929 and 1985. Upon George Macy’s death in 1956 his wife, Helen Macy, took control of the business. In 1970, the Limited Editions Club was sold along with the rest of the Heritage Press to the Boise Cascade Corporation.
George Macy’s love of books and commitment to the art of the book is visible in the large variety of publications by the Limited Editions Club. All of the Limited Edition Club books on display were once held in the private library of James and Marilynn Alcott and are now a part of MCBA’s collection. James Alcott was the Vice President of Cowles Media Company and was a founding member of MCBA, serving as the first board president. The books featured here are demonstrative of the art found within the Limited Editions Club.