Other Exhibitions

Fellows and Licentiates are occasionally involved in significant exhibitions that have not been organised or sponsored by Designer Bookbinders, and which may not involve all the Fellows and Licentiates.
These exhibitions are listed here.



  • 01
    Lord Sawyer
  • 02
    DB Fellow and President Elect Stephen Conway
  • 03
  • 04
  • 05
    Fiona McCarthy and Glenn Bartley
  • 06
  • 07
    Glenn Bartley, Angela James and Eri Funazaki
  • 08
    Carol Bartley, Julian Thomas and Angela James
  • 09

Designer Bindings at Teesside University, Middlesbrough UK
Private View - October 15, 2010

After the unforgettable day at the House of Lords two years ago (see below) where Lord Tom Sawyer displayed 15 commissioned designer bindings under the title ‘Socialism – A Celebration’, there was a wish to show them at Teesside University, Middlesbrough where he is Chancellor.

As part of the university’s 80th anniversary celebrations, the exhibition was planned into the events programme, and opened with great panache on Friday 15 October. Since 2008, Lord Sawyer had commissioned a further 5 bindings on the same theme, and so 20 bindings in total were on show on the night, laid out on tables so that the guests could handle the work and talk to the binders. Eight of the binders made the trip up to Teesside and enjoyed lively speeches, especially the guest speaker Fiona McCarthy, author of the biographies of William Morris and Eric Gill.

Click here to see a video of Lord Tom Sawyer discussing his collection at the private view.

The bindings were set up in showcases by Angela James on the following Monday for a short term exhibition.

Copies of the original exhibition catalogue are available from DB price £5 (plus p&p)



Socialism: A Celebration - a collection of beautiful books

at The House of Lords, London 2008

Lord Tom Sawyer standing in front of the House of Lords


Wednesday 15 October must surely qualify as a truly unique and unforgettable day for the thirteen binders, together with their spouses and partners, when their bindings commissioned by Lord Tom Sawyer were displayed in the glorious Royal Gallery at the House of Lords.

Lord Sawyer organised the comings and goings with the precision of a Napoleonic campaign, and a full-colour catalogue, sponsored by TU ink printers, was given out to all visitors. From 2 till 6pm there was a steady flow of parliamentarians and officials of the House who came to admire the fifteen bindings. Some members, like Lord Kenneth Baker, were collectors in their own right, but others were astounded at the art and craft of the books on display, and the single-minded commitment of Lord Sawyer to bind these seminal texts in the history of British socialism

Lord Morgan gave a fulsome speech, not only praising Lord Sawyer’s endeavours and the binders’ craft, but also identifying the importance of each historic text, putting them in context as the rich inheritance on which socialism drew such inspiration. A sumptuous tea followed in the House of Lords tearoom for all involved as a special treat.

At 6pm sharp the books and catalogues were packed up and carried over Parliament Square to the Institute of Mechanical Engineers. Sponsored by Thompsons Solicitors, a wonderful reception with wine and delicious canapés for over 200 guests was soon in full swing. At 7.15pm the guests enjoyed heartfelt and enthusiastic speeches from Stephen Conway on behalf of DB, Dave Prentis, the General Secretary of Unison, and The Rt. Hon. Hilary Benn MP. Lord Tom Sawyer visibly relaxed at this point after a demanding and strenuous day has now earned the peace to take his wonderful bindings home to enjoy at his leisure! However, as he is Chancellor of Teesside University, there were voices from the University asking for the collection to be shown there, so perhaps the show is not over just yet!

To see a selection of pictures from the day in the House of Lords and The Institute of Mechanical Engineers, click here.

Exhibition of bindings in the Royal Gallery of the House of Lords

Lord Geoffrey Howe talking to Christopher Shaw and Carol Bartley


Speakers at the evening reception at the Institute of Mechanical Engineers
Left to right: Stephen Conway; Prof. Graham Henderson, Vice Chancellor of Teesside University;
The Rt Hon Hilary Benn MP; Glenn Bartley; Lord Tom Sawyer of Darlington;
Dave Prentis, Gen Sec, Unison



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