(Market Drayton, Shropshire: Tern Press, March 1994). 150 x 235 mm. (5 5/8 x 9 1/4").  leaves. No. 8 OF 10 SPECIAL COPIES WITH ORIGINAL WATERCOLORS, SIGNED BY THE ARTIST, from a total edition of 75.
ARRESTING DARK RED GOATSKIN, GILT, BY STUART BROCKMAN (stamp-signed on rear turn-in and dated 2001), covers and spine with gilt rules in zig-zag and brick-like patterns, pared back on both boards to reveal an inlay of stained paper covered by transparent vellum, that on the upper cover in colors of yellow and green, representing harvest, that on rear cover in grays and browns, representing famine, the inlays with curving vertical black rules and black morocco geometric onlays edged in yellow, smooth spine with gilt lettering, all edges gilt. In the original black cloth drop-back box, lined in velvet, black morocco label with gilt lettering on spine. ILLUSTRATED THROUGHOUT WITH 44 ORIGINAL WATERCOLORS BY NICHOLAS PARRY: title with watercolor of two people, 27 smaller watercolors (mostly stalks of wheat or people) on pages with text, and 16 full-page watercolors. With binder's original drawing for the design and extensive description of the binding laid in. Tern Press Checklist 82a. In mint condition.
This is a beautiful rendering of the biblical Book of Ruth featuring original watercolor illustrations by Tern Press founder Nicholas Parry (1937-2012), in an innovative binding that won the Judges' Award at the 2002 Designer Bookbinders competition. The son of master bookbinder James Brockman, Stuart Brockman (b. 1972) received an Honours Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Imperial College, London before joining the family bindery in 1995. He was elected a Licentiate of Designer Bookbinders in 1999 and a Fellow in 2004. In the explanation of this binding design laid in here, he states, "Curved lines tooled on vellum and those formed by the edges of the leather panels represent a barn doorway and also stems of wheat. The design has an architectural feel through the framework design made up by the gold-tooled lines, and in addition reflects the mechanical/structural nature of the binder’s education. The inlays depict ears of wheat. The binding also incorporates references to famine and harvest, through the colours chosen." Tern Press was established by Nicholas and Mary Parry in 1973. According to the press website, the Parrys "purchased their first press from a local jobbing printer with prize money from a Welsh Arts Council open painting competition." They approached the books they produced as works of art. In an article in "Matrix 5," Nicholas said, "Our initial aims were to relate each subject to a relative set of materials, to think of the book as an overall work of art, . . . to try, as in all art, to produce a form that lives and breathes. Thus our books are not conceived, designed, produced through process, but are perceived, arranged and produced through craft." The press printed two versions of "Book of Ruth": an issue of 75 copies with etchings by Parry, and our very limited edition of 10, with original watercolors. (ST15996)