Designer Bookbinders Day of Lectures 2018
Saturday 17th November 2018
The Layton Room, St Bride Foundation, 14 Bride Lane, London EC4Y 8EQ
In 2015, John DeMerritt received a commission from David Hockney to design the housing for a series of 9-channnel video pieces made by the artist from 2010 - 2012. Hockney attached cameras to his vehicle and recorded the landscape as the car slowly proceeded down a country lane. This project is a continuation of Hockney’s longtime interest and investigations into perspective. Much of John’s recent commissioned work has been housings for digital media Art Projects - usually in the form of video projections. This has propelled him into new areas of edition binding that requires him to embrace new technologies and expand the traditional role of the binder in terms of ‘book’ work. Using this project as a platform, John will talk about using his edition binding techniques to create unique housings for digital media.
Printed in 1636, Annalia Dubrensia - the Annals of Dover - is an exceptionally rare and valuable little book, which celebrates the famous Cotswold Olympics and their founder, Robert Dover, who is credited with inventing the modern Olympic Games in England in 1612. The book contains a series of tributes from his friends and admirers, among them Ben Johnson. The games are still held each June on Dover’s Hill in Chipping Campden, and are organised by the Robert Dover’s Games Society. In 2013 the Society was fortunate to acquire a copy of Annalia Dubrensia, and Dominic was asked to look at the book with a view to conserving it. This lecture tells the fascinating story of the Olympics, and then shows in detail the cleaning, mending and rebinding, in period style, of this charming little book.
For forty years David Sellars was a leading light in the world of artistic bookbinding: latterly his work expanded into new territory as he collaborated with his wife Jill, a creative marbler. Jill will talk about David’s work during the years they spent together and their collaborations which evolved through his aesthetic resonating with the non-representational art of her suminagshi marbling, the ‘chance operations’ in John Cage’s meaning of the term. She will discuss his philosophical approach to the medium, his design themes and the binding constructions he developed. Jill will discuss his commitment to the traditional materials of leather and paper and give insights into the personal development which led him from work in the carpet mill in Halifax to the world of prize winning literature.
This illustrated lecture will explore the ways in which the codex began to assume a symbolic status in the early Middle Ages, as the peoples of both East and West responded to a new religion of the Word. Sacred texts might be enshrined in treasure bindings and book-shrines, sealed closed or even entombed, their external appearance or their very presence exerting profound influence, rather than direct access to the texts they contained. The book became a social icon.