Monday, April 12, 2010

New York

Last week, Bill and I went to New York City for a short vacation. While there, we visited several book stores and also attended the New York Antiquarian Book Fair. There were lots of books by Edward Gorey to see, and even a few pieces of original artwork for sale. I came back to Minnesota with four Gorey-illustrated volumes that I did not have in my collection.

The first two books are More of Brer Rabbit's Tricks (1968 Young Scott Books, New York) and Lions and Lobsters and Foxes and Frogs (1971 Young Scott Books, New York), both authored by Ennis Rees and illustrated by EG. I picked these two volumes up because they are both in mint condition. In fact, they were still shrink wrapped!

I also purchased a copy of The Monster Den (1966 J. B. Lippincott, Philadelphia/New York) by John Ciardi with illustrations throughout by EG. This volume is signed by Mr. Ciardi.

Rounding out my finds is a copy of Light Meters (1982 Everest House Publishers, New York) by Felicia Lamport. This book of verse has many Gorey illustrations and is signed by Edward Gorey on the title page. One of my favorite illustrations shows a rabbit looking at a maximum security compound for a verse entitled, YOUR GARDEN PLOT WON'T THICKEN IF YOU'RE STINGY WITH THE CHICKEN WIRE.


Philip said...

Following the sad demise of the Gotham, are there any New York book stores that you would particularly recommend for Gorey?

And in terms of the original art on display, was any of it interesting (so often it seems to be stuff from Ben Kahn!)?

ampootozote said...

As for bookstores, unfortunately there is no one place that could be called "Gorey Headquarters". Now it is all hit or miss to see who has gotten something in.

The internet is usually a good place to start looking for rare books these days, but I have found that many bookstores do not publish their holdings on line because it is either new inventory, or the dealer finds it too difficult and time consuming to list things on line.

The nice thing about book fairs (and visiting shops in your area or when traveling) is that you find surprises! A couple of the pieces of Gorey art at the NYC Antiquarian Book Fair have only appeared at fairs.

Example: We have a dealer here in the Twin Cities who went to the NYC fair and showed several amazing pieces of original illustration art (non-Gorey). This dealer never displays these pieces at his shop, and they are not listed on line. Why? Who knows??