Archive for December, 2009

Item of the Week: Aethelwold, Etc.

December 28, 2009

Russell Maret is a New York letterpress printer who trained in California before setting up his own business. His recent books have been extraordinary, but his newest one, Aethelwold, Etc. (2009) goes beyond extraordinary to magnificent. At heart an alphabet book, it is gorgeously swamped in color and highly imaginative renderings of the 26 letters, every aspect printed letterpress.

The Clark copy is one of only nine with a second suite of the prints and a log of Maret’s use of color.

Russell Maret won the 2009 Rome Prize for Design, and is currently living in Rome and studying the letterforms of the inscriptions in the Roman catacombs. The Clark also owns his versions of Prometheus Bound and the Pervigilium Veneris, as well as some more modest books.

Bruce Whiteman

Item of the Week: Mr. Clark’s Philharmonic

December 23, 2009

Though the Clark Library has a decent number of music manuscripts and other works, William Andrews Clark, Jr.’s lifelong interest in music is perhaps best reflected by his founding of the Los Angeles Philharmonic.  The Phil was founded in 1919 and soon replaced the Los Angeles Symphony (which Clark did not like) as the city’s pre-eminent orchestra.

Below is the cover to the “Fourteenth (Last) Popular Concert,” which took place “Sunday Afternoon, April 29, at 3:oo o’clock” in 1928 and featured popular pieces by composers such as Bach, Wagner and Mendelssohn.

LA Philharmonic Program, 1927-28

Center/Clark Fellowships for 2010/11

December 16, 2009

Applications for fellowships at the Clark Library are available online, at the website of the Center for 17th- and 18th-century Studies.  All applications are due by February 1st, 2010!

(photograph by Duff Tatian)

Item of the Week: Foure-Footed Beastes

December 16, 2009

An exhibition of highlights from the Paul Chrzanowski Collection will be on view at the Clark Library from January through April of 2010 (more anon). In the meantime, as a tease, we’d like to bring your attention to an item of interest, Edward Topsell’s Historie of Foure-Footed Beastes, published in London in 1607 by William Jaggard, the same man who would go on to print Shakespeare’s first folio.

Title page from The historie of foure footed beastes

This edition, of which our copy is bound with Topsell’s Historie of Serpents, is largely a translation of Konrad Gesner’s Historia animalium, a five-volume work first printed in the mid- to late-16th century. This historie describes animals familiar to Topsell, as well as those he probably heard about second-hand, including both real and imaginary creatures.

The Figure of Another Monster


Holiday Closure

December 15, 2009

Like the rest of UCLA, the Clark Library will be closed for the winter holidays from December 21-January 1.  We will reopen on Monday, January 4, 2010.

Woodblock by Franz Gentz, printed by the Fred S. Lang Company for W.A. Clark, Jr., our library’s founder.  Part of the Fred S. Lang Collection, Press coll. Archives Lang, William Andrews Clark Memorial Library.

Don’t forget…

December 14, 2009

The Clark’s 2nd annual tree-trimming party is tomorrow, December 15th, and we would love to see you there!

Where:  The Clark Library Reading Room

When:  Tuesday, December 15th, 3-6 PM

Bring a savory dish or sweet treat!

Item of the Week: A Wedding Sermon

December 9, 2009

From time to time, we’d like to highlight items in our collection that we think deserve some notice.  This week, it’s a manuscript acquired by the Clark in 1951 for the impressively small sum of US$13.60.

Title page from a manuscript

MS.1951.018 is a bound manuscript from 1649, executed in careful calligraphy that imitates a printed book.  It contains the text of a sermon delivered by minister Matthew Lawrence at the 1649 wedding of William Armyne, Jr. and Anne Chase in Chilton, Suffolk. A preface is written to Sir William Armyne, Sr., Lawrence’s long-time patron, who had requested a copy of the sermon, and then received this beautifully written one from Lawrence as a gift.  John Raymond of London was hired to write out this work and he credits himself above, in the space reserved in printed books for the printer and publisher’s name.


Hello, possums

December 4, 2009

This past week, we had another famous fan of Oscar Wilde in our midst – Mr Barry Humphries, comedian and business manager of Dame Edna Everage.  Mr Humphries, a Wilde collector himself, was here to examine some correspondence and other material from our Oscar Wilde collection and we hope he will come visit us again the next time he is in Los Angeles — and maybe bring Dame Edna with him.

Dame Edna Everage

It’s almost time for the Clark Holiday Party…

December 3, 2009

Join us while we deck the halls…

At the 2nd Annual Clark Library Tree Trimming Party!

Where:  The Clark Library Reading Room

When:  Tuesday, December 15th, 3-6 PM

It’s a pot luck – bring a savory dish or sweet treat!

Also, you can help us decorate the tree by bringing an ornament!

New Press Collection finding aids

December 3, 2009

Two new finding aids, written by volunteers Ashley Johnston and Jamie Henricks respectively, have been posted to Clark’s OAC page this week:

Finding aid to the Ted Freedman Collection:

Letters to and from Freedman, H. Richard Archer and Grant and Helen Dahlstrom; ephemera designed and printed by Freedman and the Platen Press.

Finding aid to the Rampant Lions Press Collection:

Letters and ephemera written and designed by Will and Sebastian Carter.

Undated Carter family Christmas card, from the Rampant Lions Press Collection