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    Book Art Museum Łódź

       (1 review)

    Ralf Herrmann
    1. Country: Poland
    2. Field(s): Editorial Design, Graphic Design, Typography
    3. Record views: 1863

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    The Book Art Museum is a library of knowledge about the history and the future of a book. In fact it is a library of “books about books” which have been collected since the beginning of the museum. Most of the books, due to the poor condition of the building (leaking roof, for example) are stored in boxes. Library equipment is being collected as well (mainly donations), however not as intensely as we would like due to the unclear legal status of the building. The “Library of books about books” is waiting for administration decisions and so far it has been created virtually. It consists of Polish and German “books about books” donated to BAM in 2011 by professor Alfred Świerk from Mainz (more than 1200 items), of Polish and foreign publications collected by the Tryznos, as well as the catalogues of the book art exhibitions collected by Alicja Słowikowska.

    The main themes are: technologies (printing, binding, paper-making), history of a book (of writing, illustrating, ornamenting), history of art (artists, styles, trends), new media (e-books, experiments), encyclopedias, compendia, dictionaries. At the moment there are but two registers available: the one made by Dominika Biernat for her MA thesis, and of the books donated by professor Alfred Świerk.

    The direct access to the books will be possible after the renovation, when a few rooms will be prepared for this function. The OK'ART library is a separate part of the “library of books about books”; it both collects and initiate publications “about artist's books”. It consists of critical papers accessible non-abridged at the Museum website. The first papers were written as referring to the collection of “Polish artists' books from the end of the 20th and the beginning of the 21st centuries”. The OK'ART Library will enlarge as new papers are sent from Poland and abroad. The texts will be in Polish and English.

    During two decades there were many exhibitions at the Museum, both Polish and foreign ones. The Museum showed also its collections in many venues in Poland and abroad.




    Location

    24 Księdza Biskupa Wincentego Tymienieckiego, Łódź, województwo łódzkie, 90-349, Poland



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    Krzysztof Słychań

      

    I work at this very museum; I do all kinds of repairs and other technical stuff. Electricity, electronics, mechanics, metalworking, programming, systems administration, research&development, machine restoration, type casting etc.

    The museum has a large collection of books on a permanent display in two of the rooms on the ground floor, but even more interesting is what is in the basement.

    We have a full typecasting, printing and bookbinding atelier with restored and operational machines from the 19th and 20th century. One of the highlights is our type foundry, which I'm proud of: we have two Monotype super casters, a keyboard and three composition casters. One of them is incomplete and acts as a source of spare parts; another one is awaiting restoration, and the last one is in good working order. It has a computer control attachment (I made it with help from John Cornelisse, who also taught me how to work on the caster) which eliminates the keyboard altogether.

    We also have a Nebitype slug caster and Soviet copies of a Linotype and a Ludlow. These are on display, although some parts are broken and we don't run them. More machines are in storage: five Foucher and two or three Künstermann&Co. casters, as well as some Soviet type and lead&rule casting machines.

    Our museum is open for cooperation; every now and then some of our volunteers run typesetting and printing workshops. We mostly work on a hand platen for smaller jobs - A4 or less, and a large FAG proofpress for posters up to A1, maybe even A0. We also have some other presses for lithography, etching, offset printing, hot stamping and bookbinding, and folding and stitching machines. We also have some papermaking equipment (e.g. a Hollander beater awaiting restoration).

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