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Grolier Club Exhibitions

Vivid Impressions. Illustration: Prints, Drawings, and Photographs - Processes and Examples.

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The Art Exemplar: A Guide to Distinguish One Species of Print from Another With Pictorial Examples and Written Descriptions of Every Known Style of Illustration ... 

William John Stannard. [London: Stannard and Rae, 1859?]

When the Grolier Club was offered this extremely rare mid-nineteenth-century encyclopedia of illustration processes, it jumped at the opportunity to acquire a copy. Of the eleven copies produced (formerly thought to be ten), all but one is in an institutional library. Each copy includes over forty original prints from the author’s private collection, which illustrate his lengthy technical descriptions of various reproduction processes.

In spite of its research value, The Art Exemplar has been fairly inaccessible to scholars due to its scarcity. The Grolier Club thus committed to digitize it through a generous 2019 Digitization Funding Award from METRO (Metropolitan New York Library Council). The project was released in the fall of 2020.

Purchased in 2016 with Grolier Club Library Harper Funds.


Walter Crane's New Toy Book, Containing Sixty-Four Pages of Pictures Designed by Walter Crane and Printed in Colours by Edmund Evans.

Walter Crane, 1845-1915. London; New York: George Routledge and Sons, [1874?].  

Walter Crane (1845-1915) is one of the best-known illustrators of the nineteenth century, justly famous for his colorful series of Toy Books, rendered in chromoxylography by the innovative printer Edmund Evans. Crane’s illustrations for Three Little Pigs would merit a place in the Grolier Club’s teaching collection on color printing regardless, but in fact it is a souvenir of a much larger collection of several hundred children’s books, dating from the seventeenth to the twentieth century, all having to do with pigs, donated to the Club in 2011 by Grolier member Frances (Connie) Dulaney. The gift was made with the understanding that, aside from a few representative examples of printing and illustration techniques, such as the Walter Crane title, the collection would be sold to support Grolier Club Library acquisitions. 

Gift of Frances (Connie) Dulaney, 2011. 

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Platinotype illustrations for "Troilus and Criseyde" from the Kelmscott Chaucer.

Edward Coley Burne-Jones, 1833-1898, illustrator. ca. 1894-1895.

At some point in the two years leading up to the publication of the monumental Kelmscott Chaucer in 1896, Sir Emery Walker (1851-1933), chief engraver and managing partner at the Kelmscott Press, took photographs (platinotypes) of drawings done by Edward Burne-Jones for “Troilus and Criseyde.” Burne-Jones' delicate pencil sketches were notoriously difficult to translate into the robust medium of woodcut, and these platinotypes were a first step in the process of adapting Burne-Jones' work for the press. The photographs are accompanied by proofs engraved on wood by William Harcourt Hooper, and a facsimile copy of the Kelmscott Chaucer from the collection of Grolier Club member, Robert Raymo (1925-2009).

Purchased in 2015 with Grolier Club Library Harper Funds.


The Astronomy of Love: Poems by Kathleen Norris; Drawings by Ed Colker.

Haybarn Press. New York: Haybarn Press, 1994.  


Artist, educator, writer, and longtime Grolier Club member Ed Colker (b. 1927) started the not-for-profit Haybarn Press in 1960 as a collaborative venture with contemporary poets. In each volume, Colker creates prints in his organic gestural style in response to the work of the author. This hand-colored offset lithograph captures the tension between absence and presence, interior and exterior, that is evoked in Kathleen Norris’s poem “The Room.”  

In 2013, Ed generously donated a copy of every Haybarn Press imprint still in stock to the Grolier Club Library. 

Gift of Ed Colker, 2013. 

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The Bicycle Diaries: One New Yorker's Journey Through 9-11.

Richard Goodman. 

Impressions Ten Years Later.

Gaylord Schanilec. [Stockholm, WI]: Midnight Paper Sales, 2011.  

The Grolier Club first met color woodcut artist Gaylord Schanilec in the course of his work on the Club’s 2001 publication New York Revisited, and Richard Goodman’s Bicycle Diaries, on similar themes of New York post-9/11, seemed a perfect complement. The inclusion, in this special issue, of a suite of progressive proofs of the “Cooper Union” illustration, made it a particularly valuable addition to the Club’s collection of illustration processes.  

Purchased in 2012 with Grolier Club Library Harper Funds, supported with a gift from Winston Tabb.