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ILAB Library - All You Need To Know About Rare Books and the Antiquarian Book Trade

  • Can we grow technophiles who are also bibliophiles? - Rare Books in the Digital Age

    Can we grow technophiles who are also bibliophiles? - Rare Books in the Digital Age

    "Not so fast! Codices—or books as we know them now—have been in their current form for nearly 2,000 years, and the technology that threatens their existence has only been around for four decades—two decades if you count widespread use."

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  • Frank Hurley 1885-1962

    Frank Hurley 1885-1962

    Frank (James Francis) Hurley was an Australian photographer and film maker, and "one of the great Antarctic photographers of all time" (Michael Rosove). He joined Mawson’s Australasian Antarctic Expedition 1911-1914, the British, the Australian and New Zealand Antarctic Research Expedition 1929-1931, he travelled with Ernest Shackleton to the Polar Regions and made films in Papua. Michael Treloar recounts the life of the artist and the adventurer.

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  • Rare Books in the Press: Good Girls, Bad Girls, and The Private Library

    Rare Books in the Press: Good Girls, Bad Girls, and The Private Library

    Plutonian beauties, women from outer space, female survivors in urban jungles, satanistic feminism or the teen-age mafia: a very special collecting tip by L.D. Mitchell: "Good Girls, Bad Girls, and The Private Library"

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  • Antiquarian

    Antiquarian

    “A mere antiquarian is a rugged being” opined Dr Johnson, succinctly and meaningfully, to Boswell in 1778.  What’s in a name? – and what of the decidedly un-mere antiquarian bookseller?

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  • How Elizabeth Gaskell Saved Charlotte Brontë's Reputation

    How Elizabeth Gaskell Saved Charlotte Brontë's Reputation

    Brontë's 1847 novel, Jane Eyre, earned the ire of critics for its frank depiction of passion in a woman - a governess, no less. Brontë was maligned as "unwomanly" and "unchristian." Poet Matthew Arnold wrote, "Miss Brontë has written a hideous, undelightful, convulsed, constricted novel... one of the most utterly disagreeable books I've ever read." The Quarterly Review asserted that Jane Eyre revealed "tone of mind and thought which has overthrown authority and violated every code human and divine." The novel had its share of defenders as well, not the least of which was fellow novelist Elizabeth Gaskell.

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  • ILAB Internships – Out of the Classroom, into the World: Madrid, Spain 2013

    ILAB Internships – Out of the Classroom, into the World: Madrid, Spain 2013

    My internship in Spain is over – six weeks, spent in this beautiful country, has ended up and I am back to Russia to my family. These two weeks in Madrid were full of impressions and events. Gonzalo Fernandes Pontes, president of AILA, and his wife Lourdes made everything to enrich my knowledge in antiquarian books and its market, to help me with my research, not to talk about their hospitality and readiness to give me a hand anytime.

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  • Book Scouting in Japan - Tokyo

    Book Scouting in Japan - Tokyo

    Rare book dealer and photography specialist Harper Levine travels through Japan with photographer John Gossage where Harper was welcomed at the airport as the “best book dealer (also best blogger) from East Hampton”. Part 2 of Harper Levine's report, featuring the Tokyo booksellers and a sushi bar.

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  • Cataloguing Rare Books - May We Please Have Our Description Back?

    Cataloguing Rare Books - May We Please Have Our Description Back?

    I have an idea for something that might actually provide the protection that copyright alone does not.  As you might expect, it involves, once again, the internet.  If that is where the crimes are now being committed, that is where we should put our cops to work.  What I have in mind is a descriptive bibliographic database where booksellers can publish all their copyrighted descriptions in a way that clearly establishes priority and ownership.  It would be a public place where you can claim what is yours.  But it would also be much more than that.  If enough booksellers participated, an open searchable database of this nature would soon constitute a valuable bibliographic reference that collectors, librarians, students and scholars could use for all types of research.  It would make a useful permanent resource out of information that is now mostly ephemeral.

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  • The Cinderella of the Arts: A Short History of Sangorski & Sutcliffe

    The Cinderella of the Arts: A Short History of Sangorski & Sutcliffe

    The Cinderella of the Arts, written by Rob Shepherd, charts the history of one of the most celebrated craft bookbinding workshops of the 20th century. Sangorski & Sutcliffe was founded in 1901 and within a few years the workshop had grown into the most important hand bindery of the Edwardian era.

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  • Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - Being an 'Ai Sho Ka'

    Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - Being an 'Ai Sho Ka'

    I normally don’t. But this time I couldn’t help myself and paid almost two hundred fifty US dollars (€ 175,- euro) for three books in Kanji (logographic Chinese characters used in Japanese language) printed on very thin paper and traditionally bound in yellow embossed paper wrappers. Why?

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  • The Art of American Book Cover - When did we leave the Victorian era?

    The Art of American Book Cover - When did we leave the Victorian era?

    Sarah Wyman Whitman was a gifted painter who was also a prominent hostess to Boston culture, married to a prosperous wool merchant. She was a student of the painter William Morris Hunt, and also studied in France with Hunt’s teacher, Thomas Couture. She met Couture and Hunt’s earlier student, the multi-talented American painter and illustrator John La Farge, who was responsible for the revival of stained glass in America, and apprenticed with him. Hunt had also studied with Millet, and brought the influence of the Barbizon School to La Farge and Whitman. The earliest example of her book cover design is on Verses by Susan Coolidge, published in Boston by Roberts Brothers in 1880. Whitman adapted Rossetti’s concept of stylized Japanese medallions, creating what might be the first American "Aesthetic" binding.

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  • Medieval Beauties, Revolutions, Mutinies, and Modern Art

    Medieval Beauties, Revolutions, Mutinies, and Modern Art

    The first event of the bibliophile’s year, and one of the most traditional – From January 29 to 31, exhibitors from Germany, Australia, France, Italy, Great Britain, USA, Austria, Switzerland and the Netherlands offer masterpieces of book art and milestones in the history of ideas at the 49th Stuttgart Antiquarian Book Fair.

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