Portrait of Dorset. The South-East
Portrait of Dorset. The South-East

GARDINER, Rena (author and illustrator). Portrait of Dorset. The South-East.

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GARDINER, Rena (author and illustrator). Portrait of Dorset. The South-East. London; Design For Today. 2023.

Landscape royal 8vo.; publisher's Greek-blue cloth with inlaid paper lettering label to upper board, double-page decorative endpapers in grey and cream featuring the Labours of the Year, based on the Luttrell Psalter and other manuscripts, in pictorial dustwrapper by Gardiner with wrap-around design, housed in the grass-green cloth-covered slipcase with inlaid paper lettering label to side; pp. 150 + [ii] + [8], Rena Gardiner, A Short Appreciation by Joe Pearson + [i]; with pictorial title-page in colours and illustrations throughout, printed largely in colours, with some in monochrome, after the original hand-drawn images which were originally lithographed from zinc plates by direct or offset lithography; a fine copy, as new.
First edition de luxe of this reprinted edition of Rena Gardiner's masterwork, which was originally published in 1960: a numbered example of only 150 specials bound at Ludlow Bookbinders and printed at Graphius, Ghent, on Fredrigoni Arena Smooth paper complete with the fine handmade slipcase by Ludlow Bookbinders An additional 600 copies were printed in the standard edition.
The original was a large and stunning volume, a gargantuan exercise and a labour of devotion, which was 3 years in the making, with only 30 copies officially published, largely for friends and family, with a limited overrun. All copies of the first edition were hand-printed by Gardiner at the Workshop Press, Wareham, Dorset, and signed and numbered by her. This original edition is vanishingly scarce, hence this beautifully produced re-rendering which aims, and succeeds, in being as close to its predecessor as possible in paper and print quality. Sold with 2 additional colour-printed greetings cards by Rena Gardiner, depicting Thomas Hardy's Birthplace, Higher Brockhampton, and the Church of Wimborne St. Giles; both numbered and limited to only 150 examples; fine.
A beautiful pictorial representation of 36 of the small towns and villages of this corner of South-East Dorset, alphabetically arranged between Affpuddle and Worth Matravers.