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Class Visits to Rare Books and Special Collections: Artists' Books and Three-Dimensional Books

Lists of materials for specific classes that have visited RBSC. Click on the tabs for your subject areas

Artists' Books in RBSC (a sample)

These are materials held in RBSC that serve as examples of artist's books and three-dimensional books available in our Private Press, Book Arts, and Fine Arts collections. To request a class visit, please email the Curator.

Back to Sample Syllabi

Cary, Melbert Brinckerhoff, 1892-1941. The estivation of two Mao Tzu : being an informal and occasionally frivolous account of our vacation in China during the summer of 1934 / set down by Melbert B. Cary, Jr., and privately printed ... for the edification of our friends on Christmas Day, 1935. New York : Press of the Woolly Whale, 1935.
An example of a japanese-style binding.
Special Collections: Private Press Collection: Press of the Wooly Whale DS710.C361935ANinja Press materials

Merwin, W. S. (William Stanley), 1927-. Real world of Manuel Córdova. Sherman Oaks, Calif. : Ninja Press, c1995.
"Reprinted from Travels published by Alfred Knopf, Inc., New York, pp. 96-114. Designed, printed, and bound by Carolee Campbell at Ninja Press... there are 160 signed and numbered copies of the edition..."--Colophon.
" ... based upon actual events in the life of Manual Córdova- Ríos (1887-1978) as told to F. Bruce Lamb and subsequently published under the title, "`Wizard of the Upper Amazon'." - publisher's blurb.Accordion-style binding.Special Collections: Private Press Collection: Ninja Press PS3563.E75 T72 1995a

Tarn, Nathaniel. The architextures 1-7. Sherman Oaks, Calif. : Ninja Press, 1999.
Notes: Title on pages preceding t.p.: The architextures one through seven : the man of music.
"The boards are covered in brass with a spine of both brass and stainless steel ... The worked brass for the covers as well as the wood block illustrations are by Carolee Campbell. This edition consists of sixty-five numbered copies, signed by both the poet and the bookmaker"--Colophon.
Issued in a clam-shell style box covered in black kyosei-shi.
Special Collections: Private Press Collection: Ninja Press PS3570.A635 A7 1999a

Visual Studies Workshop

McCarney, Scott. Far horizons. Rochester, N.Y. : S. McCarney, 1998.
Notes: Title and all printed information is from a wrapper fitted around the folded book.
The book is folded accordion-style and printed on one side only. When the book is completely unfolded it creates a single poster-size image (54 x 71 cm.) resembling a quilt.
An Artists' book out of the Visual Studies Workshop.
Special Collections: Fine Arts Collection: N7433.4.M24 F4 1998a

Zimmermann, Philip. High tension : Montage '93. Rochester, N.Y. : Visual Studies Workshop Press, 1993.
Notes: Produced and printed for Montage '93, International Festival of the Image, Rochester, NY, 1993.
Special Collections: Fine Arts Collection N7433.4.Z56 H55 1993a

Reed, Michal. The weight of the body. Rochester, N.Y. : Visual Studies Workshop Press, c1995.
Special Collections: Fine Arts Collection N7433.4.R43 W4 1995a

King, Susan Elizabeth, 1947- . Treading the maze : an artist's book of daze. Rochester, N.Y. : Montage 93, International Festival of the Image : Visual Studies Workshop Press, 1993.
Notes: "Produced in an edition of 800 copies"--Colophon.
Spiral bound on both sides of single board, with illustrations on left and text on right which fold over one another; with clear plastic envelope held closed with sticker.
Special Collections: Fine Arts Collection N7433.4.K5 T74 1993a


Oates, Leah.Transgression Chicago : Rhino Press, [1999].
Spiral binding.
Special Collections: Fine Arts Collection N7433.4.O173 T72 1999a

Susan Allix

Allix, Susan J., 1943- A-Z : old fashioned rhymes. London : S. Allix, 2003.
Notes: "First printed 1985. Reprinted 2003"--Colophon. 30 unnumbered and unsigned copies of this reprint were issued. Illustrated with 13 color prints; paper covers with red wrapper, contained in purple card case. Signed by the artist.
Special Collections: Book Arts Collection N7433.4.A44 A9 2003a

Cummins, Maureen. Crazy quilt. [Rosendale, New York] : Women's Studio Workshop, 1998.
Notes: 15 quotes and descriptions by women who've spent time as patients in various insane asylums. Printed in an edition of 100 using silkscreen and letterpress printing. The book was created ... at Women's Studio Workshop. Numbered and signed by the artist. Issued in a black cloth tri-fold portfolio, in black cloth slip-case.
Special Collections: Private Press Collection: Women's Studio Workshop N7433.4.C8 C739 1998a

Stefanson, D. H. Sonnets for women. Odin ; 1. Holly Springs, Miss. : Ragnarok Press, c1975.
1 sheet ; 40 x 40 cm. rolled on wooden rod to form scroll 2 x 52 cm.
Notes: "45 copies handset in Baskerville and printed on an 8 x 12 C & P press at 311 Memphis St. in Holly Springs, Mississippi."
Special Collections: Private Press Collection Oversize Flat: Ragnarok Press PS3569.T342 S651975A

Fulghum, Robert. Everything I ever really needed to know I learned in kindergarten. Evanston, Ill. : Press of Ward Schori, 1988.
Edition limited to 99 copies.
A miniature book.
Special Collections: Private Press Collection: Schori Press: BD431 .F841988A

Laura Davidson

Davidson, Laura. Florence. Travel guide series. Boston, Mass. : L. Davidson, 2003.
Notes: Artist's tunnel book : The original images were painted on Muirhead's blue guides and Baedeker's travel guide pages published in the 1920's. Images were painted directly on guidebook pages, then offset printed and bound by hand.
A view of the city of Florence from the steps of the church of San Miniato al Monte. It is the first in a series of books to incorporate old travel guidebooks and maps. Tunnel books date back to early peep show boxes from the 1600s. Davidson writes that she chose this format to reproduce an effect of real distance and space.
" Copy #148 from an edition of 500."
Special Collections: Book Arts Collection N7433.4.D39 F667 2003

Davidson, Laura. Travelogue. [Boston, Mass. : L. Davidson, 1993]
Consists of 6 handprinted multi-color lino cuts mounted on a continuous sheet of cream paper folded to form 6 pages. Prints are made by the reduction method. Bound in painted wooden boards with central glass window behind which is mounted a photocopy transfer print of a map entitled The cathedrals of Italy.
Signed on p. [6]: Laura Davidson, 1993. Publisher's location from ordering information, laid in. Published in an edition of 22 copies.
Special Collections: Book Arts Collection N7433.4.D39 T73 1993a

Perishable Press

Hamady, Walter. Neopostmodrinism, or, Dieser Rasen ist kein Hundeklo, or, Gub²rzub² number 6, or, The incognita of Rita's deep time coexisting within central discoveries of the thermodynamic dichotomy of western thought : observed impregnant meanings & transhistorical justifications by (LC) PS3558.A42 or W.S. Hamady. [Mt. Horeb, Wis.] : Perishable Press, 1988.
Notes: Limited ed. of 125 copies.
Half title: Neopostmodernism, or, Dieser Rasen ist kein Hundeklo, or, Gabberjab number 6.
No. 6 of the author's Interminable gabberjabb "series."
Signatures: [1]4 [2]¹² [3]8 [4]¹° [5]8 [6]¹°. Page count runs from [1]1b to [6]10a. [2]9 and [2]10, though joined to form a double leaf, have printing on one of the facing surfaces. Autographed by author.
Special Collections: Private Press Collection. PS3558.A42 N46 1988A

Hamady, Walter. 1985. Mt. Horeb, Wis. : Perishable Press Limited, 1992.
Notes: "The edition of 130 copies has 97 for sale. Book Number 117"--Colophon." John Wilde titled this book 1985 because it is basically based on a collaboration utilizing the journal kept by 'the eccentric writer' Walter Hamady for that year."" No037X130"--P. 1." 104 page surfaces, 93 physically activated with printing presses, ink, rubber stamps, pencils, labels, perforation and holographic signatures."--Colophon.
Private Press Collection: Perishable Press Limited PS3558 .A42 N4 1992A

Flying Fish Press

O'Banion, Nance. Domestic science : idioms. Berkeley : Flying Fish Press, 1990.
" Edition of 150 copies and a deluxe edition of 15 copies"--Colophon.
Printed on both sides of a continuous strip with additional leaves attached, folded accordion style and laid loose in a box. The "idioms" appear on 1 side of the strip, the "pop-up icons" on the other.
Special Collections: Private Press Collection: Flying Fish Press N7433.4.O23 D66 1990a

McDevitt, Elizabeth. Octopus. Written by Elizabeth McDevitt and illustrated by Julie Chen. Berkeley, Calif. : Flying Fish Press, 1992, c1988
Notes: Accordion book. Poem. Printed in blue-green on heavy gray paper covered with blue-green threadlike lines; irregularly-shaped piece of blue paper with blue-green lines pasted on outside. Title printed vertically on piece of blue paper attached to clamshell box. Text on interior of clamshell in wavy lines resembling octopus." Published in a limited edition of 100 copies. Box made by Sandy Tilcock" -- inside of clamshell. Library has no.: 80.
Special Collections: Private Press Collection Oversize: Flying Fish Press. PS3563.C3585 O38 1992a

Subject Guide

Sarah Cain's picture
Sarah Cain
RBSC: 815.753.0255; Regional History Center: 815.753.9394