Saturday, April 23, 2011


Last Easter I posted here a few of the ink drawings I had done many years ago on the life of Jesus and lo, Nicolas McDowall saw them, declared them to be good and decided to publish the whole suite as a book. 

And behold, with perfect timing, the latest Old Stile Press publication Scenes from the Life of Jesus is ready and glowing: my ancient drawings resurrected in a stunningly designed and hand-printed by Nicolas book. The intense blue-black lines inhabit the pristine white space of the paper as if they were born there while the minimal text in pale grey and blue Aries type acts as a whispered accompaniment. You can read all about it on the Old Stile Press blog and the book's pages and close-ups are in a slide-show at the main website of the Press, linked above. Concerning the subject, this is what I wrote as the foreword to the book:
I went to Wales this week to sign the 60 copies of the book and stayed overnight at Frances and Nicolas McDowall's marvellous home, a place so magical that even if it was not also the site of their Old Stile Press, it would be stored in my memory as one of the most inspiring places I have ever been privileged to visit. The inside of the house blends seamlessly with the outside and in both, every corner yields a discovery, a lovingly tended treasure. The McDowalls have an extraordinary art collection, mainly of neo-romantic English art, but also some idiosyncratic pieces dotted around the grounds, such as the slabs of slate engraved with Pilgrims of Solitude a poem by Cecil Collins. The sculpture framed by the living room window is by Michael Ayrton. 

However you celebrate this resurgence of Spring, have a beautiful weekend.

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