Prints by Four Artists

Prints by Four Artists

Artist book of prints by four artists
c. 1641, Fully bound in green parchment
343x504x53 (WHD)

CONDITION

BINDING The heavy parchment cover was damaged in several places, including a piece missing from the back-board and a frayed split down the spine. The cover was pasted onto the boards, and also either lined or placed on lined boards. The boards were warped and had heavy corner damage. Other than this they were fairly solid and reusable.
TEXTBLOCK was packed sewn, though it was mostly broken. There was heavy paper damage with tears along the spine, the edges of the book and two loose leaves. The edges were brittle throughout the book . It was extremely dirty throughout.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION There were two heavily damaged and unusable green ties.

TREATMENT

  • Mechanically cleaned throughout with a chemical sponge.
  • Pulled apart the sewing, keeping the back board and final section attached together as it was part of the last section.
  • Carried out paper repairs to the textblock and section folds using various appropriate Japanese tissue.
  • Consolidated corners of the boards, including recreating one using layered grey board. They were left uncovered.
  • Pressed the boards to flatten where possible, without humidification.
  • Attached new cords to the old cords by sewing and pasting them together.
  • Resewed the sections with packed sewing, using the back board as the primary section to sew from, as final section was still attached.
  • Cords were laced into the boards using the original method.
  • Spine backed with PaperNao K37.
  • Rebacked with parchment, toned with Selaset Dyes.
  • Created and attached a net pouch to preserve the green ties.

If you have a damaged book that you would like to discuss, please do get in touch.

Mondays at the V&A

This week I was continuing my work on the book covered in green parchment – as yet I have not found a proper title for this book, just a library mark and a small amount of blurb at the beginning of the book stating what it contains – I think this must be where the library have got the name from – Prints by Four Artists.

I have come across some interesting quips today, by what must have been the owner or the collaborator of the book – there a two blank pages where there were once prints, the first being roughly removed and leaving damaged paper behind. The pages have been left blank and annotated as in the pictures:

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"Observe by this the absurdity of lending Boyes such a Book"

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"Taken out - What a Pity..."

Quite entertaining!

And finally some more pictures of dirty pages that have come up clean!

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Mondays at the V&A

Well today at the V&A has been great today as always. I started today making paste, which I quite often do – it’s a very relaxing start to the week, as I sit under the widow sill and look out into the sun blushed V&A old building whilst stirring the paste. It’s just about finished and ready to cool down as the time comes for morning tea – couldn’t be more perfect timing!

Once tea and paste was done, Anne and I went to the National Art Library to fill up the boxes with books that I was working on last week and at the same time came across a project for me to start working on over the next few weeks.

This book we selected is called Prints from Four Artists, and is a collection of prints by four different artists. It is a large book covered in green parchment, which is something I have not seen before, and Anne tells me is quite rare. The book needs thorough cleaning throughout, which I have started with a chemical sponge – this is going to take me some time! Then I will move on to paper repairs, and finally onto the structure of the book. It needs resewing onto its cords and then rebacking, and some parchment repairs on the front, which I may do with toned parchment, or tissue. The sections are quite thick, so it will be an interesting one to sew back together.

All in all a very interesting book to work on with some fantastic prints throughout and I’m looking forward to getting to work on it.

The green parchment cover

The spine of the book

Damaged sewing

The first page prior to cleaning

The first page after cleaning

me cleaning!