THE SP CENTURY: BOSTON'S SOCIETY OF PRINTERS THROUGH ONE HUNDRED YEARS OF CHANGE.
(Society of Printers). Kosofsky, Scott-Martin (editor).
- Charlestown and Boston, MA and New Castle,DE: Society of Printers, Boston Public Library, Oak Knoll Press, 2006.
- 6 x 9 inches
- cloth, leather inset label with SP logo
- 268 pages
- ISBN 9781584561941 / 1584561947 / Order Nr. 92255
- Price: $45.00 other currencies
This beautifully produced volume celebrates the centennial of Boston's Society of Printers, the oldest honorary society of its kind in America. Founded in 1905 by such luminaries as Daniel Berkeley Updike, Bruce Rogers, Henry Lewis Johnson, Carl Purington Rollins, and William Dana Orcutt, the Society's dedicated membership over the years has included the likes of William A. Dwiggins (who in 1922 actually coined the term "graphic design"), Rudolph Ruzicka, John Howard Benson, Ray Nash, Roderick Stinehour, Dorothy Abbe, Hermann Zapf, Philip Hofer, Leonard Baskin, and Matthew Carter.
The book's ten original essays cover unusually broad ground for such a publication, not only delving into the Society's history and Boston's, but also into more philosophical terrain, examining questions such as the definition of printing itself, the political and sociological worlds of some prominent members, and the grand-scale game of "musical chairs" played by those who have called themselves "printers" over the past hundred years. An essay on type and lettering design among the SP membership and its circle is especially rich, comprising interviews with leading practitioners and including information on these crafts that cannot be found elsewhere. A review of a century of meeting announcements is a microcosmic history of American graphic design and printing techniques in the 20th century. Also examined are the habits of the great book collectors among the Society's members, and the distinguished group who have continued in the realm of handmade books and fine letterpress printing.
The authors are all noted scholars and practitioners: Lance Hidy, Jean Evans, Eleanor M. Garvey, James E. Mooney, Barry Moser, Katherine McCanless Ruffin, Darrell Hyder, Al Gowan, Victor Curran, and Scott-Martin Kosofsky. The designer of the book is the renowned Roderick Stinehour, who contributed a colophon that is a fine essay in its own right. Scott-Martin Kosofsky, well-known designer and author of Judaic works, edited the volume. As one might expect from a book produced by and for The Society of Printers, the Design and Execution are exceptional. The illustrations have been rendered in stunning four-color tone, making everything from the black-and-white images to the full color illustrations crisp and eye-catching. Co-published with The Society of Printers and The Boston Public Library.