The exhibition includes an experimental Victorian wooden binding, and work by Paul Delrue and Julian Thomas, the library’s former head of binding and conservation, later awarded an MBE for services to conservation science and bookbinding. Thomas also worked closely with leading twentieth-century Welsh artist Sir Kyffin Williams. They collaborated on several designs for Kyffin’s books such as his autobiography Across the Straits.
“It’s a visual feast for any bibliophile,” said the library’s promotions and marketing manager, Nia Wyn Dafydd, “a celebration of the very highest skill in the art of bookbinding. These are works of art in their own right. The tradition of bookbinding is still strong in the library with a new generation of apprentices adopting these rare skills and taking a keen interest in the craft.”
Beautiful Books runs until December 9, 2022.