Wednesday, April 15, 2015

stocktaking 2

Prima materia is the first & only type specimen book I have issued - it didn't list or name types with alphabets, but simply used the types in various settings, some of which were copies of pages in previously printed volumes and others were newly minted for the purpose of the book - the image on the left above is made solely from brass rules, while that on the right contains an image & a few words taken from the great Aldus Manutius's Hypnerotomachia Poliphili, Venice 1499 - I had that block made sometime in the 1980s and have brought it out from hiding on a few occasions since then - 

below on the left is simply a small act of homage to the man who started us on the way to print & the multiplication of (more or less, as it turned out) exact copies of a single text - even if "aventur und kunst" were not Gutenberg's words they still perform as a primary stimulus for most of us in the field of fine printing - the types here are John Peters's Castellar & Giovanni Mardersteig's Dante - on the right, the large figures are wood type and the only part of whatever font it is that I have - the Greek below is Jan van Krimpen's Open Kapitalen, and the whole setting a nice example of what can be designed when one accepts the sheer limitations of what one has - 24 letters in the Greek alphabet = 22 + 2, and voila, a design & text looms into view - 

the work is done in 50 copies on Magnani handmade paper & printed on a Pratt-Albion handpress - there are just 2 copies available at AUD $750 - the pictures were taken by Bruno Leti -