Kim Schwenk

Oct 132017
 

To continue with our short list series, here are a few strange and unusual items bound to be loved by someone.

We will have more to come, including a vernacular photography catalog before the Boston ABAA fair and of course, the Boston show list.  Featuring new and exciting things!

With that in mind, our next fair is the 41st Annual Boston International Antiquarian Book Fair, November 10-12, 2017. We’ll keep you posted for passes for the Friday night opener!

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Countess of Caithness, Duchesse de Pomar [Marie (Mariategui) Sinclair]. A Midnight Visit to Holyrood. London: C.L.H. Wallace, Philanthropic Reform Publishers, Oxford Mansion, 1887. Limited Edition. Originally printed for private circulation, but published on the three hundredth anniversary of the execution of Mary Stuart, February 8th, 1887. Slight foxing on the frontispiece and portrait of Mary Stuart, and a strange series of period puncture wounds to front cover penetrating text to stab portrait of Mary, Queen of Scots on page 45. Else, tight, bright, and a scarce and odd book. Original dark green cloth, lettering and pictorial device on front and back covers, edge, in gilt, black coated endpapers. Frontispiece with tissue guard and one portrait. 103 pages, 2 unnumbered leaves of plates, illustrations, Very Good+. Hardcover.

Recollection of the communication between Marie Countess of Caithness and the ghost of Mary Queen of Scots from Holyrood House in Edinburgh.  Marie used to visit Holyrood House near midnight and claimed to listen to the dead queen’s spirit voice. The work was originally published for private circulation only, and it is likely that the Countess gave copies to her friend exclusively. This edition, printed by C.H.L. Wallace appears to be limited.

The Countess was increasing influenced by theosophy and universial In 1876, and joined the Theosophical Society founded by known occultists Madame Blavatsky and Colonel Olcott in New York. In 1884, during their stay in Paris with Lady Caithness, Blavatsky approved the creation of the “Theosophical Society of the East and West,” the French branch of the Theosophical Society. Lady Caithness’s theosophy was marked by esoteric Christianity influenced by Jakob Boehme and Swedenborg. She held a spiritualist salon in her Parisian mansion, every Wednesday from spring to autumn in the early 1890s. As to the damage inflicted on the book itself, a few theories arise: it is possible it is just book vandalism. A more compelling and fascinating theory is the book was part of hysteria or ritual to evoke the spirit of Mary Queen of Scots. The book is inscribed to “Miss Blackwell” of which there are two well-known spiritualists in London and Paris; Anna Blackwell and Elizabeth Blackwell. Anna was a prolific writer and participated in the spirit communities during the late 19th century in London and Paris. It is also recorded she was a medium and was said, at times, to be tormented by the ghosts and spirits that threatened her. (#9384) $350.00

 

Fleischauer, Louis ; Aesthetic Meat Foundation. Flesh Art Book. Berlin: Aesthetic Meat Front/AMF, 2014. Limited Edition. Tight, bright, and unmarred. Cased in leather ‘corset’ (see below). 44pp. Illus. (color and b/w plates). Fine in Fine Case. Hardcover.

Limited first edition of 36, this edition is 1/36, with the trade edition cased in a custom leather ‘corset’ cover binding, secured by metal grommets and two leather strap loops. Leather still bears a hide scent and features a painted patina, a fire burnt treated, manipulated, and animal-like with elements cut into tails. The AMF logo is carved into the leather at the top of the cover, as well as the edition number: 1/36 on the back. Text printed on high quality matte clay coated medium weight paper. Signed by Louis Fleischauer, “Pure Kaos Against Total Control” 2016, on the opposite end papers. Includes a small archive of performance fliers for AMF [2002-2015], AMF Korsets / Fleischauer Creations marketing cards and a DVD-R of live performances, signed with a fingerprint impression and numbered 1/36. Edition is divided into several sections: Flesh Art Manifesto, Sculpted Skin (Wearable Art/AMF Korset), Rituals of Transformation, Human Instruments, Aesthetic Meat Front (Rituals + Actionism), Transformed Flesh, Interviews + Random Thoughts. Scarce copy, most editions are with private collectors, this is the last acquired copy from AMF with the leather casing and performance inclusions and also is the first numbered and sculpted edition, as well.

This book is a retrospective of Aesthetic Meat Foundation, (Aesthetic Meat Front is the performance collective of the entire art and creative project of Aesthetic Meat Foundation), featuring a mix of ritual, sculpture, and wearable art. AMF performances in the United States are generally rare, but emulate the same power as Ron Athey and Einstürzende Neubauten fused with an anti-industrial complex manifesto. “Louis Fleischauer, is a sculptor, and body-artist using organic materials such as animal hides, bones, flowers, blood and his own skin. In his public rituals he turns humans into living sculptures and instruments, including his own body. Through a mix of agony and euphoria Louis falls into a state of trance. His sculptures are a reflection of this experience.” – from the AMF biography. (#9084) $550.00

 

Sprinkle, Annie. Annie Sprinkle Self-portrait [MSS Notations]. [No Place], 1981. Unique. Signed by Sprinkle with numerous notations all over the image, notation at rear, else bright and clean. 16x24cm. b/w photograph. Signed by the artist. Fine. Photograph.

“Original self-portrait photograph of sexologist Annie Sprinkle. Sprinkle is known as the “prostitute and porn star turned sex educator and artist.” Annie Sprinkle began working at the ticket booth at Tucson’s Plaza Cinema at 18, when Deep Throat was playing. The film was busted, and when Sprinkle had to appear in court as a witness, she met and fell in love with Deep Throat’s director, Gerard Damiano, and became his mistress, following him to New York City where she lived for twenty years. Annie’s first porn movie was Teenage Deviate, which was released in 1975. Perhaps her best known mainstream porn featured role was in ‘Deep Inside Annie Sprinkle’ (co-directed by Sprinkle and sexploitation veteran Joseph W. Sarno) which was the #2 grossing porn film of 1981.

She is considered a role model for a new generation of feminists, she challenges old conceptions and established role models of sexuality and was a pivotal player in the 80’s “sex positive feminist movement” and has long championed sex worker rights and health care. The photograph is heavily annotated with a detailed analysis of the image.The verso contains the anotation p.4 102% suggesting that the image was published although we have been unable to trace the publication. A fantastic image of a true sex goddess.”

Together with Annie’s “Post-Porn Modernist: My 25 Years as a Multimedia Whore”, which includes a ‘clean’ version of the image with the caption, “It was this latex ensemble, which I had brought back from Europe, that started America’s latex trend (or so it seemed to me). It made quite a splash at the HFC [Hell Fire Club]. Or should I say quite a splash was made on it.” (#8115) $1,250.00

 

Pell, Sara C. In Dillafluff Land. New Jersey: Standard Publishing Concern, Publishers, 1910. First Edition. Light shelf/edge wear, front boards loose with light toning, few page tears, one leaf loose but present, American Red Cross stamp, else bright and unmarred. Oblong 8vo. Approx. 58pp. Illus. (b/w plates). Good+ in Wraps. Hardcover.

“Esther from Aunt Ann, Xmas 1910”. The black and white Illustrations are by A.G. Learned. Extremely scarce, no known copies. Odd, children’s nonsense nursery rhymes with accompanying anthropomorphic figures very similar to Dr. Seuss’ characters created much later, and similarly, the rhyming is reminiscent of Edward Lear. The book was marketed and reviewed in major publications, but little is known about the author or other published books. The characters were affectionately described as “freakish” and “queer” in reviews. (#9118) $150.00

Woven paper undergarments, Diane Jacobs

Jacobs, Diane. Woven Paper Undergarments [Bra and Panties]. Portland, OR: Scantron Press, 2010. Limited Edition. Bright and unmarred. Woven paper strips, letterpress printed, sculptural. 11x23x3″ np. Fine.

“In this body of work I intend to expose the tenacious, white, patriarchal power structure by using language as my witness. Over a three-year period I collected slang and derogatory words that exploit women. The exhaustive list came from friends, family, and several dictionaries on slang. Strangers also contributed by writing on anonymous pink and blue cards their answer to the question what are the worst names you have ever been called? In my first projects, I sculpted hats, bras, and underwear made of letterpress-printed woven paper. This series of work makes feminist references to craft, the body, and a misogynist culture.” (#8766) $2,000.00

Greer, John Michael. The Weird of Hali: Innsmouth. Oregon: Arcane Wisdom Press, 2016. Limited Edition. Tigh, bright, and unmarred. Custom bound in green faux alligator laminate cloth boards with gold foil inlay embossed Lovecraft image, smythe sewn, and signed, hand-numbered by author with hand-printed ink stamp image of H.P. Lovecraft. Colored endpapers with image of Old Ones and include high gloss print insert of Lovecraft inspired artwork. 9.5×6.25”. 276pp. Limited edition of 500 copies. Fine. No DJ, as Issued. Hardcover.

Cover art by Caniglia and book design by Larry Roberts. “Like every other grad student at Miskatonic University, Owen Merrill knows about the Great Old Ones, the nightmare beings out of ancient legend that H.P. Lovecraft unearthed from archaic texts and turned into icons of modern fantasy fiction. Then a chance discovery—a lost letter written by Lovecraft to fellow Weird Tales author Robert Blake—offers a glimpse into the frightful reality behind the legends, and sends Owen on a desperate quest for answers that shatters his familiar world forever.

As he flees across the witch-haunted Massachusetts landscape toward the mysterious seaside town of Innsmouth, Owen finds himself caught up in a secret war between the servants of the Great Old Ones and their ancient enemies, a war in which yesterday’s friend may be tomorrow’s foe and nothing is as it seems. The history of the world is not what he has been taught—and the tentacles reaching out for him from the shadows of a forbidden past may hold not only his one chance of escape from the terrifying forces closing around him, but the last hope of life on Earth…”(publisher’s note) (#9096) $75.00

Greer, Michael. Weird Hali of Innsmouth

Bizarre Female Domination [Personal Scrapbook]. unknown, nd [circa 1970s]. Unique. Light shelf/edge wear, two leaf loose, very slightly musty, else tight, bright, and unmarred. Brown paper wrappers, mounted images/text at front and read. 4to. np. Illus. (color and b/w plates). Very Good. Original Wraps.

A very thorough and engaging collection of imagery and text involved, as the name implies, around the area of the BDSM scene from a Domme female/submissive male perspective. Neatly tape mounted images on lined white paper, the color and b/w images range from relatively small (approx. 2′ square) to full page (cut from magazines and original photographs). There are also some short text elements around the subject matter, too. Most interestingly, interspersed throughout are full page collections of ‘want ads’ from around the country and Canada…the shared qualities of most reflect either specific interest or, perhaps, that he ‘knew’ them. Overall, an eccentric stimulating collage of pre-internet collection of bondage erotica. (#8389) $450.00

Anon. Sumatran Batak divination book [pustaha]. Indonesia, Early 20th century. Unique. Twelve (two-sided) panel concertina fold; fastened on handcarved alim (or agarwood) tree-bark original boards; inscribed and drawn on smoothed and pressed alim tree-bark; 4.75 x 39″ (unfolded); illus. Handwritten in red and black ink pigments. Boards stained with natural pigments, in remarkable condition, less one split in bark panel. An exceptional and critical book for Indonesia history and culture. Very Good. Hardcover.

The ‘pustaha’ [named by the Batak people of interior province of northern Sumatra, Indonesia] are manuscript books constructed and composed by their “datu” or magicians and healers. Origins of the pustaha remain somewhat clouded to non-indigenious research, although, records of provenance date to the 18th century. The Batak people settled mainly in the Lake Toba region of North Sumatra, and included three dominant dialects: Toba, Angkola, and Mandailing.

The books themselves are frequently made with alim tree-bark; written and illustrated with other natural ink pigments. The pustaha is significant for the Batak, as the texts are idiosyncratic to the datu, meaning they are didactic tools for apprentices, but also for members of the community to interpret important decisions and advise on community issues, as reconciled by the datu. The books are often written in note-like script. The script is almost illegible for most members of the community, and indecipherable to Western scholars, however the syllabe script is thought to be derived from East Indian Sanskrit or to some scholars, Indian Palava script. Many contemporary pustaha were made and sold to tourists of the region, as well. The content of the books vary, but generally are divination books, including diagnosis of illness, protective/destructive magic, and acts of cult. Many of the books are also astrological in nature and contain solar and lunar charts and tables, and in the case of this particular pustaha, which contains animistic figures. This book features four carved lizards in low relief on one of the boards, which is associated with fertility and fertility rites. The verso has a carved image of star or a floral symbol. Many of the figurative llustrations in the book [a child] [a goddess figure with serpents] [star], also allude to creation myth, as the ‘tendi’ manifestation of ‘life’ and ‘death’ represented these symbols. The text is inscribed and illustrated on both sides of the bark. Although colonized by the Dutch government in the 19th century, many Batak people retain indigenious treligious beliefs, although increasingly marginalized.

Voorhoeve, P. “Batak Bark Books,” Conservator, University of Leiden, John Rylands Library and the Manchester University Press, 1951.

Teygeler, Rene. “Pustaha. A Study into the Production Process of the Batak Book,” 1993. (#9148) $1,200.00

 

Sumatran pustaha

 

[Count of Saint Germain (attributed)]; Koss, Nick [ed.]. Triangular Book of St. Germain. Seattle, WA: Ouroboros Press, 2015. Limited Edition. Triangular hand-bound and stitched in red and black letterpress wraps; 48 pp.; full color interior printing in English and French text; illus.; limited to 444 copies. As New. Original Wraps.

The edition of the ‘Triangular Book’ was deciphered, transcribed and translated by Nick Koss, who also executed the research and editing of the text. An excellent essay by Koss about the provenance of the manuscript is featured in “Clavis 3: Cipher & Stone.” The edition is limited to 500 copies in three editions. 26 special copies bound in full leather accompanied by a hand-wrought silver Longevity Talisman featured in the original manuscript. 26 copies in full leather and 444 copies bound in letterpress wraps. Design and typesetting by Joseph Uccello. – from the colophon. (#9180) $65.00

[Garcia, Fernando Aguayo; Queer Nation]. Proper Conduct / On October 6, 1989, Police Rioted in the Castro… [Rally Poster]. [San Francisco]: [Queer Nation], 1991. First Printing. Bright and clean. Cyanotype poster. 12×35.5″ Illus. (mono plate). Near Fine.

Poster for a protest organized by Queer Nation in San Francisco to demand justice for victims of the 1989 Castro Sweep Police Riot, when more than 200 San Francisco police officers reacted to an ACT UP march by invading the gay Castro District, declaring the entire neighborhood an unlawful assembly and violently clearing the streets. The Queer Nation protest took place at the San Francisco Hall of Justice following a Police Commission finding that the police sweep of the Castro had constituted “proper conduct.” The poster was designed by gay Latino artist and activist Fernando Aguayo-Garcia and was produced in an extremely limited number of copies using the cyanotype process. (#9272) $350.00

Heart In Your Business: 14th National Motorcycle / Bicycle Show. New York, 1928. Unique. Excellent condition, bright and unmarred, heart shaped advertisement for the 14th Annual National Motorcycle and Bicycle show in New York City, Madison Square Garden. Very Good+.

The first National Auto Show was held in 1900. Apparently, as early as 1915, the two-wheel industry was expanding so the national show split from the automotive industry to have their own independent show. The newly built Madison Square Garden accommodated track racing as well. Rare piece of motorcycling and bicycle ephemera. (#9315) $45.00

 

 

Brown, Frederic. ETAOIN SHRDLU. Portland, ME: Ivy Derderian/Wolfe Editions, 2009. Limited Edition. Tight, bright and unmarred. Unprinted tan cardstock wrappers; green textured heavy stock DJ, lettering and pictorial elements in black ink, advert endpages. 8vo. 13pp plus ads. Illus. (b/w plates). Numbered limited edition this being 6 of 40 copies. Fine in Wraps. Original Wraps.

The first solo project from Ivy Derderian, working at Wolfe Editions. Printed in Linotype Bonodi Book, created on an Intertype (the Linotype’s successor). From the prospectus:

“Frederic Brown’s entertaining short story about a sentient Linotype, titled Etaoin Shrdlu, was originally published in 1942 in the magazine Unknown Worlds. While Mr. Brown was well known for his science fiction short stories and novels as well as his award-winning detective fiction, it is clear that he knew his way around a Linotype and a print shop.

Ivy Derderian, with the help of Wolfe Editions, announces a new publication of Etaoin Shrdlu, designed in the manner of pulp magazines of the 1940s. The text type is Linotype Bodoni Book, titles were set in Ludlow Ultra Modern. Text is printed on acid free Dur-o-tone Aged Newsprint, cover is acid free St. Armand Colours. The two engravings used are from a 1923 issue of The Linotype Bulletin.”

Designed and printed to reflect its pulp heritage using Dur-o-tone Aged Newsprint (acid free) and cover wraps on St. Armand Colours. Illustrations from a 1923 issue of The Linotype Bulletin. A wonderful blending of content and design. (#7080) $225.00

 

Harwood-Jones, Markus/Star . Confessions of A Teenage Transexual Whore [Complete in Ten Parts]. Toronto: Self, nd [circa 2010-2012]. First Thus. Tight, bright, and unmarred. Taped bindings over printed paper wraps, color inkjet reproductions. 8vo. Var. pag. Illus. Near Fine in Wraps. Original Wraps.

“A 10-part zine series telling Star’s short stories of survival sex work over the course of two years.” [From the author] (#9294) $145.00

 

Eckels, Howard Samuel. Post Mortem Stains and Putty Color. Philadelphia: Press of H.S. Eckels & Co., 1922. First Edition. Minor shelf/edge wear, joint starting at staples, light/even toning to textblock, ownership signature and notation at front, else tight, bright, and unmarred. Navy cloth boards, printed label, fold-out map (in red) of circulatory system. 12mo. 53pp plus adverts. Illus. (color print). Very Good+. Hardcover.

Includes ‘modern’ book curse, “‘Notice’ / This book is the property of G. L. Dodds. / Read if you care to but do not mark, destroy, or carry out of back room. / G.L. Dodds / P.S. I weigh 157lb. Let this be a warning to you. / G.L.D. (#8966) $245.00

 

Dwight, Thomas. Frozen Sections of a Child. New York: William Wood & Co, 1881. First Edition. Light even toning, tips through, wear at head and tail, ownership signature at first blank, moderate shelf/edge wear, else tight, bright, and unmarred. Black cloth boards. 8vo. Illus. (b/w plates). Good+ [Textblock Very Good]. Hardcover.
Includes fifteen full-page drawings from nature by H.P. Quincy. A century or so before CAT scans and MRIs, this work offered detailed tomogrpahic images. Remarkably important (and one of the great titles in publishing). First edition of a classical work of great importance in pediatrics, and the first American group of serial sections. This work provided tomographic images a century before the CAT and MRI. Dwight was a Harvard medical school and, later in life, succeeded Oliver Wendell Holmes as the Parkman Professor of Anatomy. ”A classical work of great importance in pediatrics, and the first American group of serial sections” (Choulant-Frank, p. 409). (#8962) $225.00

Aug 072017
 

 

We are beginning to release a series of special themed short lists, this one inspired by the “death positive” movement, not just for collecting, but for understanding about death culture and documentation.

Death Becomes Her” can be viewed on our catalogue page, along with other catalogues of the mostly recently past.

Next big fair is ABAA 41st Annual Boston International Antiquarian Book Fair, November 10-12, 2017! Can’t wait!

 

Jul 142017
 

So after a few weeks of decompressing, we are back from RBMS 17 Iowa City! With epic stop overs in Indiana, Chicago, St. Louis, Kansas City, and more! By visiting the dead during the trip, we certainly appreciate our education and places of memories. Much like books, graveyards emulate a sense of memory.  While strolling through the local cemetery in Iowa City, we devised a plan to take the crypt a to it logical bibliophilic conclusion. What if you could shelve yourself much like a book, after walking on this complicated earth, in a familiar setting, housed in a familiar form? Thus, the idea of ‘bibliocrypt’ was born! Picture a crypt that embodies a library shelves…stone bindings on the outside, shelves with book-urns lining the inside. #bibliocrypt

Too morbid? Well, we did engage with the living, many living and breathing archives and libraries, librarians, and archivists doing amazing and engaging things to enrich our conscious world.  RBMS is typically a time of exchange and growth for many in the field. We were there to listen and talk to people in a wildly critical time of scholarship and information exchange.  Unlike most book fairs, this is best time to actually discuss components of library collection development, new modes of material description, and aspects of outreach and engagement.  We did a pretty good job of bringing materials that reflected the over theme of the conference: “The Stories We Tell” from artist’s books, narratives, to strange and odd visual storytelling.  A pared down booth!

In the future weeks, we will be thinking about yes, death, our biblioarcanum and new catalogs and lists coming out.

Our next big show is Boston ABAA, November 10-12, 2017. #biblioarcanum

Jun 012017
 

 

Yes, despite what we complain about, there are things we enjoy about the approaching summer. That includes attending the Rare Books and Manuscripts Section conference in Iowa City! Lux Mentis will be part of the Bookseller showcase this year, along with many other fine booksellers. We are especially excited to feature our selection of book arts and primary source materials in keeping with this year’s theme, “The Stories We Tell.” We are also sponsoring the panel: “MATERIALIA LUMINA: THE CONTEMPORARY BOOK IN ITS HISTORICAL CONTEXT: PHILOSOPHICAL MUSING OF THREE MASTER PRINTERS” featuring Peter Rutledge Koch, Russell Maret, and Gaylord Schanilec.

As a large part of our mission we aim to support especially book arts and book narratives, so we will have a good selection of artist’s books and both pictorial and literary narratives. A few of our latest acquisitions will be featured including works by Ximena Perez GrobetLorena Velázquez, Alexandra Janezic, Maureen Cummins, and Sam Winston. As usual, we will also bring a few challenging and provocative things.

Before the show, we will be attending the Chicago Book & Paper Fair and during the week of RBMS we will also be attending the Solstice Book Fair organized by book artists, Alexandra Janezic and Candida Pagan.

Until then, keep reading, keep collecting! See you in Iowa City!

 

Mar 182017
 

New York, you were lovely! Now, we will be digging ourselves out from the permafrost, and reflecting on our time at the book fair. We partnered with Brian Cassidy and despite our cave-like space, we managed to see a ton of foot traffic, as well as some attention from CNN (see below), a representative from China on book arts, and a nice article by Erin Schreiner addressing women in the book trade. It was particularly heartening to see just how much younger this year’s attendees skewed… While the hall remained dominated with older collectors, etc…there were a remarkable number of young, interested, engaged attendees. Even more so on the librarian front. We even had a visit by the remarkable Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson! The future, I think, is looking quite good.

SCROTUS gave us both a good and bad bit at the fair. On the downside, CNN wanted to shoot in the booth…as it was a particularly sexy, interesting collection of material across the booth, but then saw the rather brilliant Billy Childish posters we had front and center. To paraphrase: “Oh, we can’t shoot those, we’d get too much pushback”. Personally, I think that is a sad commentary, but there we are. On the upside, we sold *every* single set we had with us (about 10) and there was no other single thing that amused more people. We had exactly one person grumble about it…and several dozen smile/laugh/commiserate/take pictures/generally enjoy them. The culmination came, during break down, when one of the teamsters, walking by, asked (with an impressive NJ accent) “Ya sell my favorite thing?” “What was that?” “Pissing in the mouth of Donald Trump” (he said, laughing). Great finish to the show.

#nyabaa17 #nyabf17

 

Mar 102017
 

Lux Mentis, Booksellers specializes in expanding the notion of the printed, constructed, and idea of the book. We have an enormous and diverse spectrum of material, from unusual first editions to carefully executed fine press to wildly esoteric books challenging not only the physical object of a book, but the content within. Our mission revolves around building, confronting, documenting, and supporting the printed, painted, and photographed world around us.  We work with a broad range of clients, from collaborating with institutional libraries and private collectors to build collections to supporting and inspiring young mind’s to collect and/or create books. We believe that at the heart of society, books are the brick and mortar that solidifies our identity making us accountable, responsible, and creative humans. It is our job as booksellers to help support that relationship.

#NYCBOOKFAIR2017 #NYABAA17

With that in mind, we like to represent many critical issues in our book selections, embodied by the work of both past and present creators. This year in New York we will showcase books and manuscripts that emphasize women as creators and feminist discourses. The following will be featured at our booth E5:

Gilman, Charlotte Perkins. The Yellow Wall Paper. Boston: Small, Maynard and Company, 1901. Second Edition. Rubbing to extremities, light shelf/edge wear, inscribed on the ffep, else tight, bright, and unmarred. Internally clean and fresh. Publisher’s yellow decorated glazed paper covered boards titled in a rather bilious orangey red. 12mo. 55pp. Very Good. Hardcover.
Inscribed to front flyleaf by the great lady herself:  “To Mrs. Beatrice Forbes Robertson Swinburne Hale! With Love of Charlotte Perkins Gilman. 1910” One of the greatest and most significant weird tales of the late 19th century, a story “not intended to drive people crazy, but to save people from being driven crazy…” inscribed by its ground-breaking feminist author, to a friend and fellow fighter for woman’s suffrage on the occasion of her marriage. (#9123)        $22,500.00

Charlotte Perkins Gilman, “Yellow Wallpaper” 2e, inscribed by Gilman

Cummins, Maureen; Nicole Cooley [author]. Salem Lessons. High Falls, New York: Maureen Cummins, 2010. Limited Edition. Concertina, or “theatre in the round’ multi-folded artist book. Signed by artist and author. Fine in Fine Archival Box. Hardcover.
“Salem Lessons” was printed and produced by Maureen Cummins in the Winter and Spring of 2010, with typographic assistance from Kathy McMillan. The cycle of poems was created by Cooley specifically for this book; the accompanying images are from a penmanship book kept by a Salem, MA boy, Josiah Peele, during the years 1808 and 1809. The project traces the psychic reverberations of the Salem witch trials upon succeeding generations. It address–as all examinations of the trials do–our own modern time and situation. There are thirteen poems altogether, representing both the accusers and the accused, survivors and the condemned, but focusing on the trials and the treatment of women. — from the colophon and website. (#9247)    $2,500.00

Maureen Cummings – Salem Lessons

Jacobs, Diane. Object n. Object v. Portland, Oregon: Scantron Press, 2016. Limited Edition. Bright and unmarred. Wood and glass custom case with laser cut text, materials include glass, chicken egg shells, plaster, tangerine skin, gold leaf, acrylic balls, antique glass/aluminum slide mounts, India ink on vellum, oil paint, water color, human hair, wood, leather, aluminum combs, ceramic, military dog tags, and molded handmade cotton paper. np. Numbered limited edition of 4. Fine.
“object n., object v. was created to link present day gender inequality to our ancient past. Male control over women’s bodies and women’s sexuality continues around the world, as does the hierarchy of objective beauty. While the ancient Greeks were oppressing and objectifying women, an egalitarian society roamed north of the Black Sea. Legendary warrior women known as Amazons rode horses, practiced archery, fought to defend and conquer, and had sexual freedom. In this artist book I have juxtaposed two parallel worlds through objects and imagery. All the text is derived from two books that paint the picture and tell the story. Helen of Troy: Beauty, Myth, Devastation by Ruby Blondell and The Amazons: Lives & Legends of Warrior Women Across the Ancient World by Adrienne Mayor. When I read that self-reliant warrior women existed in the ancient world I was inspired and I wanted to share that knowledge to rekindle a collective vision of equality.” [artist statement] (#9240)        $10,000.00

Diane Jacobs Object v. Object

 

Feb 262017
 

The New York Antiquarian Book Fair is right around the corner! We have fashioned ourselves into a corner this year, literally. However, as always with amazing new delights to share! The gallery below is just a snippet of our booth in New York, link to our show list will be available next week.

As usual, a consistent selection of books arts, fine press, photography, ‘sex, death, and the devil’, in addition to our fondness for esoterica. We’ll have some ‘normal’ books too.

*If you would like passes to the New York Book Fair, please contact us*

SEE YOU THERE!!! #nyabaa17 #nyabf17

Feb 192017
 

We’re back! [for now]. We want to extend our thanks to everyone in Oakland for a successful book fair, organizers, patrons, and booksellers alike! We packed enough material for two booths and after we attended CODEX, we acquired more excellent material for another. CODEX was a truly inspirational experience, as we were able to seek out some new extremely provocative and important work from book artists, including Maureen Cummings, Diane Jacobs, Ximena Perez Grobet, Lorena Velazquez, Xiaoding Xu, and Xueling Dong.

We managed to organize our booth and showcase our collections, in the Lux Mentis way! Images first, a booth tour video at the end. Fun for all!

 

Feb 012017
 

We will soon follow the sun and be present at the 50th California International Antiquarian Book Fair, Oakland (ABAA), February 10-12th, 2017. Please visit us at Booth #316 and do not hesitate to ask for passes, we have a limited number to give away.

As usual, we will be debuting a number of new and important items, including the work of Sam Winston (see images below), Occult and Esoterica materials, Fine Press and Fine Bindings, and are other eccentric cacophony of fun, including:

  • Anon. Sumatran Batak divination book [pustaha]. Indonesia, Early 20th century. Unique. Twelve (two-sided) panel concertina fold; fastened on handcarved alim (or agarwood) tree-bark original boards; inscribed and drawn on smoothed and pressed alim tree-bark; 4.75 x 39″ (unfolded); illus. Handwritten in red and black ink pigments. Boards stained with natural pigments, in remarkable condition, less one split in bark panel. An exceptional and critical book for Indonesia history and culture. Very Good. Hardcover. (#9148) $1,200.00
  • Cooksey, Gabrielle. The Book of Penumbra [Art Binding]. Tacoma, WA: [Artist Book], 2016. Unique. Tight, bright, and unmarred. Black leather boards with oval cutthrough, 7 carved skulls suspended upon gold wire strung web-like through the opening, marbled endpages. Large 12mo. np [19pp]. Illus. (b/w with gilt plates). Numbered limited edition of 23. Fine in Fine Box. Hardcover. (#9226) $2,250.00
  • Harman, Moses [ed.]; Edward C. Walker, Lillian Harman, Lois Waisbrooker, et al. Lucifer, the Light-Bearer. Chicago, IL: Moses Harman, 1902. First Edition. Some slights tears at folds and edge wear. Three large folio printed broadsides, 8p., 10×13″ Issues: Third series, volume VI, number 7 (February 27, 1902; whole number 906); volume VI, number 12 (April 3, 1902; whole number 911); volume VI, number 23 (June 19, 1902; whole number 922) Very Good. (#9192) $700.00
  • St. James, Margo. 1st Annual Hooker Convention Poster. Margo St. James, 1974. First Printing. Pinholes in corners, small closed tear at one edge with related minor rumple, handful of very pale moisture marks, else bright and clean. Orange paper, blue ink. 23 x 15 Very Good. Poster. (#9183) $750.00
  • [Photography and travel – Great Lakes] Collection of two scrapbook photography and ephemera albums assembled by an American woman traveller and companions, c. 1920s. 1925-1930. Set of two photography albums both secured in original contemporary 1920s tie and knot covers. Each album contains carefully clipped and placed black and white photographs mounted to black craft paper, some captioned by hand in pen. Other materials included are souvenir brochures, chromeolithographic color and black and white postcards, hand-color printed clippings from tourist ephemera and color printed maps with the annotated journey in pencil. Albums contain over 150 black and white silver gelatin
    photographs and approximately 100 pieces of clipped ephemera. Very Good+. (#9186) $650.00
  • Winston, Sam. A Dictionary Story. London: Arc Artist Editions, 2013. Limited Edition. Tight, bright, and unmarred. White cloth boards, black ink lettering, concertina construction; green cloth slipcase. Tall 8vo. np [24pp]. Signed by the artist. Limited numbered edition, this being 63 of 100. Near Fine in Wraps and Fine Sleeve. Original Wraps. (#9224) $1,450.00

We will be showcasing a remarkable collection of ocean liner material and a spectacular inscribed copy (by Charlotte Gilman Perkins) of Yellow Wallpaper.

Ocean Liner cruise ship Archive

 

Charlotte Perkins Gilman, “Yellow Wallpaper” 2e, inscribed by Gilman

The show list for the California International Antiquarian Book Fair can be found here along with our other catalogs. Please note, we do not have miniature books listed in the show list, but WILL HAVE a selection of miniatures available!

Please check the schedule of events and times of show floor opening. A couple of things to note:

  • Exhibit featuring the Special Collection from The Bancroft Library at the University of California, Berkeley. This year’s Book Fair will include a special exhibit from The Bancroft Library at the University of California, Berkeley, which has a long history of collecting the literary fiction of California. In more recent years, that scope has expanded to include mystery and detective fiction, fantasy and science fiction, and western fiction
  • Also, the newly formed ABAA Women’s Initiative invites women and women-identified book and manuscript sellers working in the trade and women and women-identified individuals connected and/or interested in the trade, i.e. librarians, collectors, community members, book artists/binders, to attend a networking reception on Friday, February 10th from 8pm-9pm after the CA Book Fair, at the Oakland City Center, Room 208, Oakland Marriott Hotel. Wine and refreshments will be served. Event invite here: https://www.facebook.com/events/1399736753383558/

If you have any questions about any of the material, do not hesitate to contact us! See you in California!

Jan 182017
 

Due to low attendance, rising costs, and suspected pressure from animal rights activists, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus announced the circus would close in May 2017 after 146 years.

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus is a United States traveling circus company billed as “The Greatest Show on Earth.” The circus, known as Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Combined Shows, was started in 1919 when the Barnum & Bailey’s Greatest Show on Earth, a circus created by P. T. Barnum and James Anthony Bailey, was merged with the Ringling Bros. World’s Greatest Shows. The Ringling brothers had purchased Barnum & Bailey Ltd. following Bailey’s death in 1906, but ran the circuses separately until they were merged in 1919.

A brief summary about the early days of circus reveals:

In 1884, five of the seven Ringling brothers had started a small circus in Baraboo, Wisconsin. This was about the same time that Barnum & Bailey were at the peak of their popularity. Similar to dozens of small circuses that toured the Midwest and the Northeast at the time, the brothers moved their circus from town to town in small animal-drawn caravans. Their circus rapidly grew and they were soon able to move their circus by train, which allowed them to have the largest traveling amusement enterprise of that time. Bailey’s European tour gave the Ringling brothers an opportunity to move their show from the Midwest to the eastern seaboard. Faced with the new competition, Bailey took his show west of the Rocky Mountains for the first time in 1905. He died the next year, and the circus was sold to the Ringling Brothers. [Wikipedia]

A fascinating aspect of the circus is the transportation methods used, beginning in the late 19th century. Trains, and train wagons transported people, equipment, animals, and performers state-to-state and overseas by country. A seemingly economical and fast way to travel, the mode of travel wasn’t without its peril.

The Railroad Tradition at Ringling Bros.

1830s Railroads and circuses begin to appear in the Eastern United States

1840s Circuses begin using boxcars and stock cars for limited distances

1870s April 18, 1872 Ð the P.T. Barnum Circus loaded onto flat cars “piggyback” -style on the Pennsylvania Railroad. Rented sleepers serve as solid circus train, the first unit train concept

1890s The best circuses move by rail: Barnum & Bailey has 56 cars, Ringling Bros. has 56 cars

1920s Ringling Bros. totals almost 100 cars traveling by rail

1950s Ringling Bros. shifts to combined rail/truck transportation

1960s Ringling Bros. discontinues using tents and returns to 100% rail transportation

1969 Ringling Bros. forms second rail unit

The first circus to travel by rail was the Den Stone Circus in 1854. Through out the history of the American circus, train wrecks have taken many lives. The last fatal circus train wreck occurred in 1994 near Lakeland, Florida. [www.circusesandsideshows.com]

Regardless of the irony about train wrecks and the circus, the history of rail and commerce is documented in photographs quite effectively and idyllically. It speaks to the nature of the business and revealed a lifestyle of hard labor and endless travel.  Depending on what you believe, we have replaced the circus with our own media circus, and nevertheless the early traveling sideshow and the romanticism of the train has a place in Americana, now almost only captured in images.

[All images in gallery are from Collection of Circus Travel photography albums. c. 1890-1960. A fabulous pair of albums containing upwards of 550 black and white original photographs and clippings of circus vehicles, parades, acts and equipment dating from the late 19th century through the Depression and war years up to the late 1950’s and early 1960’s. 2 volumes, quarto,
approx 34 leaves per volumes, 310 images in volume I, 234 images in vol II with some loose and displaced images throughout. The albums are 1940’s rexine bound ring binders with heavy sugar paper leaves, all images in very good condition or better, the majority captioned with typed tape slips either on the image or adjacent to it on the album page. Very Good+. Spiral Bound. (#9077)]

 

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