“I stand in awe at the work it has taken to get to this point,” writes Giovanni Scorcioni, his collaborator in publishing a deluxe limited edition of the final product.
Scorcioni is the founder and owner of Facsimile Finder, a company in Italy that sells facsimiles of medieval manuscripts. In 2016, he met Cochrane and learned about his daunting work-in-progress. “George was an artist on a life mission. He also had an intense passion for Dante and the Divine Comedy, similar to that of my fellow Italians,” writes Scorcioni. Cochrane was hopeful that Facsimile Finder would publish the manuscript he intended to complete. Primarily a bookseller and not a publisher, Scorcioni was ambivalent, but Cochrane’s devotion won him over.
Cochrane had previously worked on a hand-lettered and illuminated letterpress edition of Inferno with Thornwillow Press, so he understood the nature of the meticulous work. According to Scorcioni, the artist “kept to a rigid schedule like a medieval monk,” while the team at Facsimile Finder began planning for publication in 2021 when Italy would be commemorating the 700th anniversary of Dante’s death.