The Book | Vellum & Parchment | Papermaking | Calligraphy | Wood
engraving | Typography | Letterpress printing | Paper decorating | Bookbinding | Artists' Books | Conservation | Bibliography
The arts of the book are those traditional disciplines or crafts interested and/or connected
with the making of books as well as their consituent parts. These include bookbinding, artists' books, fine
printing & typography, papermaking, calligraphy, book illustration including wood engraving, paper
decorating including marbling, and box making. CBBAG has tried to
simplify definitions of book arts, artists' books, livres d'artiste, private press, design binding, etc., in
With the advent of the mass-produced book and, some would say, the introduction of
television, the well-crafted book has become an art form. Many artists are devoting their creative energies
to the production of unique books or book objects (sometimes in very limited editions) which, textually, may
be about anything, and celebrate nothing so much as their "bookness." These are known as artists' books. Other book artists prefer to perfect one of the
constituent parts -- specializing with a pen or a graver; trying to make a superior sheet of paper, or to lay
down a "kiss" impression with a cranky old press.
In these pages you will learn more about the subjects listed above -- and others. Bear in
mind, though, that what information is presented here is simply an introduction: to learn about any of these
subjects in real detail, well, that's what books are for! And workshops, and websites, and mentors, and
mailing lists (several of which are listed below). For now, you can visit the
CBBAG In-Studio Workshops page to find out what
CBBAG courses are coming up and about the Home Study
Programme, or visit some other sites on the web devoted to those subjects. If
you can contribute words or images to improve what's here, or helpful advice of any kind, please notify the
web administrator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Book Arts Mailing Lists
Mailing lists are e-mail discussion groups. When you subscribe to one (or more) you will
automatically receive e-mail from the list every time one of the members posts a question, an answer, a
complaint, a flame, and more. Listed below are several mailing lists with instructions on how to subscribe.
The instructions must be followed carefully: do not include signature files or extraneous messages of any
kind -- just the message exactly as shown (substituting your real name if requested).
The address given is the address to which you send the subscribing information. It goes to
a computer, not a human being: if you don't subscribe properly, the computer will not know what to do with
your subscription. If your subscription is accepted, you will receive a set of instructions by return e-mail:
KEEP THESE INSTRUCTIONS! They will tell you how to unsubscribe; how to stop receiving mail temporarily when
you go on vacation; how to find the archives of past postings; etc.
Book_Arts-L -- A discussion group for all book arts
You can join this group by sending the message "subscribe Book_Arts-L Your Name" to email@example.com.
TYPO-L -- Discussion of Type and Typographic Design
You can join this group by sending the message "sub TYPO-L your name" to firstname.lastname@example.org.
LETPRESS -- Letterpress Discussion List
You can join this group by sending the message "sub LETPRESS your name" to email@example.com.
CALLIG List -- A discussion group for calligraphy
You can join this group by sending the message "subscribe" to firstname.lastname@example.org