#5037 Historic Paper Case Binding, with Anne Covell - Feb 24 & 25
Limp paper case bindings were often described historically as “temporary bindings” because they were typically employed to safeguard a textblock until it could receive a more elaborate, permanent binding. The structure had its heyday during the Renaissance, but by the late 17th century was already in decline. However, in the wake of the 1966 Florence flood, book conservator Christopher Clarkson noted that limp vellum bindings had not only survived the flood better than their more elaborate leather-over-board counterparts, but that they had been better preserving their text blocks even before the flood. He attributed their durability to their simple, lightweight construction, which allowed for mechanical movement without strain in varying atmospheres over time.
These structures have taken many shapes and forms throughout history and in different regions of the world. Loosely, they might be described as any textblock covered in an unsupported vellum or paper case wrapper. The historic paper case includes a textblock sewn on thongs that is laced into a limp or semi-limp wrapper at its joint. This structure has wide turn-ins, structural endbands, a fore-edge yap, and is almost entirely non-adhesive.
Over two days, students will sew a textblock with z-gusset fold flyleaves using a herringbone stitch over split alum taw supports. We will then sew bead-on-the-spine endbands, create our case, and lace our textblock into its wrapper.
Saturday and Sunday, February 24-25 from 9 am to 4 pm. There will be an additional material fee, due at the class.
About the Instructor | Anne Covell
Anne Covell received her MFA in Book Arts from the University of Iowa Center for the Book where she studied on an Iowa Arts Fellowship. She has taught courses in bookbinding, papermaking, and natural dyeing for the University of Iowa Center for the Book, as well as the University of Georgia study abroad program in Cortona, Italy. Her work has been exhibited throughout the United States and abroad and can be seen in a growing number of special collections libraries and museums worldwide including the Yale University Arts Library, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the National Library of Chile. She currently resides in San Diego, CA.
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