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Tiny Worlds: Fantasy and Friendship in Bookplates by Women Illustrators
September 20, 2019 @ 9:00 am - November 15, 2019 @ 5:00 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)
An event every day that begins at 9:00am, repeating indefinitely
University of Connecticut, Archives & Special Collections, McDonald Reading Room, Thomas J. Dodd Research Center, 369 Fairfield Way, Unit 1005
Storrs, 06269 United States
The practical purpose of a bookplate – a label placed inside a book that identifies its owner – belies a rich and fascinating history of book illustration, design, collecting, and sharing. Originating in the Middle Ages when books were rare and valuable objects, bookplates were necessary to protect books, if lent or borrowed or stolen, to insure they were returned to their owners. Inventive designs and motifs reflected and flattered the personal tastes and interests of wealthy book owners. In the 19th century, as printing methods evolved and books became cheaper to produce, a growing middle class began assembling personal libraries and presenting books as gifts. The resulting demand for bookplates fostered new heights in bookplate illustration. These tiny works of art represent innovations in visual arts, graphic design, printmaking, and typography.
The Ex Libris Collection preserved in the University of Connecticut’s Archives & Special Collections consists of books, periodicals, and hundreds of specimens of bookplates. Produced by artists and printmakers throughout the world, the bookplates date from the 1700s to the present day. The exhibition provides a selection of bookplates collected by women and commissioned from women illustrators.
L: Lettie Nye (artist), bookplate for Kate W. Philipsen, 1932. 1.5 in. x 4.5 in. Ex Libris Collection, Archives and Special Collections, University of Connecticut.
R: Elizabeth Joyce (artist), bookplate for Florence Stinde, 1919. 2.5 in. x 3.4 in. Ex Libris Collection, Archives and Special Collections, University of Connecticut.