The Bodleian’s Bibliographical Press hosted David Armes (Red Plate Press) as resident printer for one month at the end of 2019. A picture diary of his residency in Oxford provides the context for his publication, Between Sun Turns, part of Armes’s ‘text landscape’ series, responding to sights and sounds of Oxford. Armes used the equipment in the Bibliographical Press, including a Western-model proofing press (‘Vandercook’), and the more recently-acquired Inksquasher circular chase. The images detail some of the 15 passes through the press that this print, now also an accordion book, required.
Watch David Armes’s lecture, ‘Accumulating Narrative,’ from December 2019, hosted by the Centre for the Study of the Book and the Oxford Bibliographical Society
Each year the Bodleian hosts a visiting printer who produces a work on-site, and shares their printing experience and artistic vision with students and the public. The library invites applications from printers who can bring the Bodleian’s workshop and equipment into fruitful dialogue with some of the outstanding special collections of the library. Previous Printers in Residence have been Russell Maret in 2017, who printed with a new typeface of his own design, Hungry Dutch , an echo of the type-founding in the 1670s century, near to the Bodleian site, introduced for the use of the University press under the direction of John Fell. In the following year Emily Martin, Resident Printer in 2018, produced a book, ‘Order of Appearance: Disorder of Disappearance,’ that re-imagines stage directions in a book like the First Folio of Shakespeare’s plays, cross-cutting the meetings of characters on a stage through a slice-book format, and handing the playwright’s control over to the reader.