Book Beautiful Art Print
Featuring an excerpt from
A Tract on Calligraphy, Printing and Illustration & on the Book Beautiful as a Whole
by T.J. Cobden-Sanderson (1900)
To celebrate the Arts and Crafts aesthetic, Ampersand Book Studio has created a 10"x15" letterpress art print celebrating the "Book Beautiful." Limited to an edition of 100 copies, it features an excerpt from Cobden-Sanderson's seminal essay applying the concepts of the Arts and Crafts Movement to the design and printing of books.
Our edition was letterpress printed using a 1948 Heidelberg Windmill Press at Betts Printing in Tucson, Arizona. The paper is 100% cotton, 300gsm Somerset paper from the historic St. Cuthbert’s Mill in Wells, England.
The Book Beautiful art print is available for purchase in our shop.
This print features both the Doves Roman type and decorative letters based upon those of The Doves Press edition of Paradise Lost. It reflects Cobden-Sanderson's preference for the “especial beauty of the first or introductory page and of the title, and for the especial beauty of the headings of chapters, capital or initial letters.”
About the Design
The first lines of this broadside were created by Ampersand Book Studio based upon the letters used by Cobden-Sanderson in the first pages of the Doves Press editions of “Paradise Lost” and “The Bible,” two of the finest works of English printing ever produced. Each individual letter was reproduced electronically by Ampersand Book Studio and laid out in a style inspired by those famous editions. The body text is Doves Roman.
One of Cobden-Sanderson’s stated goals in establishing The Doves Press was “to attack the problems of Typography.” To that end, he and his colleagues developed the Doves Roman typeface. Based upon the 15th century letter forms of Jenson and Rubeus, Doves Roman was produced in one size only – the 16pt version used in this reproduction. It was designed to be lean, elegant and subdued – a stark contrast to the more ornate, gothic type used by the other great British Arts and Crafts printer, William Morris at his Kelmscott Press.
Learn more about the design and creation of the print on Substack
Our Substack subscribers receive free, behind-the-scenes views of our creative process, like...
The Doves Typeface – Birth, Death & Rebirth
Creating a New 'Johnston' Heading for the Book Beautiful Art Print
The Arts and Crafts Movement and the Fine Press
Edward Johnston and the 'Especial Beauty of the Headings'