Calendar for the 2018 — 2019 Season

Per tradition, cocktails at 5:30pm - 1st Wednesdays, October through May, except as noted.

For the benefit of members, the following is the schedule for the current season.


September 8 A Pilgrimage to view selections from Special Collections, Wellesley College Library with Ruth Rogers and a tour of The Book Arts Laboratory with Katherine Ruffin. Visitors will be treated to an unusual and not especially didactic assortment of the Curator’s favorite things. Selections will include high and low points of typography, ancient and modern forms of the book, owners’ traces left in books, books that don’t look like books, lead and wax seals of dead rulers, DNA of Marie-Antoinette, Maria Theresa, and the Brownings, and unclassifiable ephemeral items whose place is in an academic teaching library. The Book Arts Lab, which will celebrate its 75th anniversary in 2019, is a unique laboratory for the hands-on study of the art and history of the book.”

October 3 The Eighth Annual Charles A. Rheault Lecture
Charlie Rheault in Retrospect
A collection of talks honoring this Champion of “The Study and Advancement of the Art of Printing”. Introduction by Anne Bromer. Remarks by John Kristensen, Merce Wilczek, Pat Peterson, and Michael Babcock. There will be time for your own remarks toward the end of the evening.

November 7 Dan Rhatigan: "The Infancy of the Monotype Library”
Formed in England in 1897, Britain's Monotype Corporation was an offshoot of the American Lanston Monotype Company — sister companies that shared technology but not typeface designs at first. Dan will tell us what is known about the earliest British Monotype typefaces, the people who worked on them, and the activity of its Type Drawing Office based in Salfords, Surrey. Records of the early days are sparse, but they leave enough clues to give a picture of Monotype's ambitions for the printing industry.

December 5 Stuart Walker: A Whitman Sampler
Overlooked, Unfamiliar, Lost, and Rediscovered. Examples of the Art of Sarah Whitman. Stuart Walker will discuss some less-familiar examples of Whitman’s work, including gravestones, monuments, architectural design and decoration, lost and overlooked book covers, and butterflies. Examples will include images of books discovered during the past year, which finally solve a longstanding question regarding the book covers created for one of America’s greatest authors.

January 2Jordan Goffin:
As Head Curator of Collections at the Providence Public Library, Mr. Goffin spoke on the Updike Collection, and the deep resources that the library has been assembling.

February 6Barbara DeWilde:
Working at Alfred A. Knopf, Barbara de Wilde helped redefine and elevate American book cover design in the 1990s. The early 2000s found her directing the design of Martha Stewart Living, raising the bar again—this time for magazine design and lifestyle brands. Her latest work has been focused on yet another medium: interactive product design at the New York Times. Barbara's talk will share a journey filled with discovery and reinvention in publishing and design.

March 13 (please note this date change)Jock Reynolds: A Tribute to Richard “Chip” Benson
Benson possessed talents as a leader, printer, photographer, teacher, writer, thinker, and maker of many things. Reynolds will reflect on some of Benson’s endeavors, and gift the Society a copy of Photographs from the Collection of the Gilman Paper Company, the massive volume that took Benson four and a half years to print in the basement of his Newport, Rhode Island home. Published in a limited edition of 1,200, this creative endeavor is now touted by many as the Gutenberg Bible of photographic printing, an achievement that saw the MacArthur Foundation award Richard Benson one of its famed early fellowships.

April 10the 45rd annual Dwiggins LectureRick Poynor: David King
David King was a British designer, graphic activist, visual historian. The very model of an engaged, politicised, protean, intellectually ambitious, visually inventive designer, an exceptional and exceptionally inspiring figure, whose work remains timely. His book The Commissar Vanishes: The Falsification of Photographs and Art in Stalin’s Russia which has particular resonance today as technology continues to make “alternative” visual facts which distort historical record more difficult to parse and debunk.
   Rick Poynor is an author, critic, lecturer and curator, specialising in design, photography and visual culture. He is Professor of Design and Visual Culture at the University of Reading in the UK. Rick will present at the Boston Public Library.

The event begins at 6pm, is free and open to the public, and is held at the Boston Public Library’s Rabb Lecture Hall, 700 Boylston Street, Copley Square, Boston, Massachusetts 02116 - Tel: 617-536-5400.

May 1Annual Meeting. Members Only; No Guests.
Anne Bromer: the Jeweled Binding at the Bottom of the Sea and Other Tales
recaptures the lore and the lure of a lesser known piece of history surrounding the sinking of the Titanic.
   Anne Bromer’s talk begins with the story of the most encrusted jeweled bookbinding of the modern era, The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam. The history of this opulent book was laced with tragedy and included the name of Boston’s Harry Elkins Widener of Harvard University fame.
   The story continues with colorful images highlighting the history of treasured bindings of the Middle Ages to the present. Why were these extravagant bejeweled books produced as early as the 9th century with almost all artisanship with gems stopped by the 17th century? It took three hundred more years to revive the art of jeweled bookbinding.


*The Society of Printers is a private organization. Meetings are open to members and their guests only.