InsideOUT: Contemporary Bindings of Private Press Books

Contemporary Bindings of Private Press Books
January 9 – March 28, 2015
Greg Campbell Fine Binding
January 9 – March 28, 2015

InsideOUT celebrates the art and craft of contemporary bookbinding and private press printing. Organized by the U.K.-based binding society Designer Bookbinders, this ambitious project is a collaboration between thirty-four binders based in the United Kingdom and twenty-five based in the U.S. and Canada.

Greg Campbell Fine Binding celebrates work from this renowned Minneapolis-based bookbinder and proprietor of Campbell-Logan Bindery.

Thank you to all who attended the opening reception and gallery talk by featured artist/publisher Gaylord Schanilec of Midnight Paper Sales, on Friday, January 9.

The sixty-five bindings exhibited under the title InsideOUT not only show excellence in craftsmanship, but can also be justifiably considered as works of art in their own right. To bind such a work usually takes more than sixty hours of highly skilled and concentrated labor, so the texts that a binder chooses should be worthy of such effort! With this in mind, the primary motivation for this exhibition was to feature some of the best possible examples of contemporary private press printing. The results can be seen here: four British and five North American private presses have supplied a total of twenty-eight different titles. In many cases binders have chosen to work with the same title which is fascinating in itself as the viewer is presented with different interpretations of the same text. In order that the exemplary skills of hand printing and the variety in illustration techniques can be appreciated, examples from thirteen of these texts are displayed in sheet form alongside the bindings. This also allows visitors to sample and enjoy the words and images hidden between the covers. Imagination and beauty abound, confirming that the arts of hand bookbinding and hand press printing are thriving on both sides of the Atlantic.

Participating private presses:
Arion Press (USA)
Barbarian Press (Canada)
Incline Press (UK)
The Lone Oak Press (USA)
Midnight Paper Sales (USA)
Old School Press (UK)
Old Stile Press (UK)
Shanty Bay Press (Canada)
The Whittington Press (UK)

The exhibition launched at the St. Bride Foundation’s Layton Room Gallery (London; May 15 – August 22, 2014) and toured to Harvard University’s Houghton Library (September 11 – December 13, 2014). The exhibition will also travel to Bonhams New York (April 10–19, 2015) and the San Francisco Center for the Book (June 6 – July 5, 2015).

About the St. Bride Foundation

In 1891, St Bride Foundation was established to provide a social, cultural and recreational centre for London’s Fleet Street and its burgeoning print and publishing trade. Now, this historic site is a living and breathing community once again, with new projects, facilities and programmes expanding its central mission: to excite and inspire. The St. Bride Library is a world class resource with rare and extensive collections of over 50,000 books, pamphlets, periodicals and artifacts relating to printing, typography, journalism, publishing and graphic design. Visitors come from across the globe to delve into the archives containing works from 1400 BC. A new printing workshop re-opened in 2010, bringing the teaching of printing back to Fleet Street. Additionally, exciting events and lecture programs are offered in the centre’s theatre, bar and event spaces.

For more information, visit the St. Bride Foundation’s website.

About Designer Bookbinders

Designer Bookbinders is one of the foremost bookbinding societies in the world. Since its inception it has been the model for many bookbinding societies in other countries, and its fellows have an international reputation for their progressive influence on the art, design and technique of the hand-bound book. The Society, begun in 1951 as the Guild of Contemporary Bookbinders, adopted a more structured organization and a formal constitution in 1968 under its present name of Designer Bookbinders.

The objects of the Society are twofold: the preservation and improvement of the craft and design of fine bookbinding through the encouragement, exercise and maintenance of standards; and the promotion of public interest in the craft and design of fine bookbinding. These aims are furthered by means of exhibitions, public lectures and master classes; the publication of relevant books, periodicals and catalogues; and the organization of an annual bookbinding competition. Membership of the Society is open to all. It is made up of four categories of membership, with Fellows and Licentiates being the exhibiting members.

For more information, visit the Designer Bookbinders website.