A Book of Nursery Rhymes

A Book of Nursery Rhymes, illustrated by Enid Marx (Incline Press, Oldham, 1993)

Introduced by Graham Moss

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I was in contact with Enid Marx, who was an English wood engraver in the best part of the 20th century – the 1920s and 1930s. I was in interested in her work as the maker of repeat pattern paper. I had met her a couple of times and I was visiting her in London on one occasion when she actually got the phone call from the publishers who had published a book of her wood engravings in 1938. And she said to me afterwards, ‘I think they were calling me to see if I was still alive’, because apparently the law had changed and apparently it had been decided that the wood engraver owned the engravings, despite the fact that they had sold them to the printing house. They were phoning her to see if she was still alive if she wanted her blocks back. And she said ‘yes, please send them straight away’. I asked her what they were for, and they were for the Chatto & Windus Book of Children’s Nursery Rhymes that she had done the cuts for. And then she told em that she had about 40 great or great-great nieces and nephews, and if I would like to borrow the blocks from her, I could print the book. So said I said ‘yes please!’ – and that was the first book I finished.

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The cover of the original Chatto & Windus book illustrated by Enid Marx

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As told to Mary Ingoldby at the Baskerville Wayzgoose organised by The Story of Books. Click on the link below to hear the full interview, and the development of Incline Press:

We will be adding more Printing Tales interviews to this playlist, and will be introducing books mentioned in these recordings here on A Book a Day in Hay. We will also post updates on The Story of Books website.

Incline Press is 25 years old this year. Graham Moss will be at the Winter Wayzgoose at The Story of Books, 20 Castle Street, Hay-on-Wye on Saturday 24 November 2018, printing on an Adana press, and selling books, prints, and unbound sheets for binding. Also, at 6pm Graham Moss and printmaker and illustrator Nick Wonham will be launching their new book The Charm of MagpiesFree event, all welcome. Please join us for drinks and to hear more about the production of this stunning letterpress printed book.

 

 

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