Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Holman's Library Publications

I'm not a serious books arts person although I can see how an interest in this area would grow on you if you didn't exercise restraint. I have, however, been interested throughout my library career in producing good library publications that promote the programs and services of the library. I have previously written about William R. Holman and a book on Bookplates for Libraries that he published under his Roger Beacham imprint. I recently purchased a copy of another Holman book entitled Library Publications which was published in  a limited edition (300 copies) in 1965 when Holman was Director of the San Francisco Public Library. This very large book (15+" by 10+") was designed by Holman's wife Barbara, and has a forward by Lawrence Clark Powell. The book is a work of art in itself but it's primary goal is to provide guidance on how to produce attractive, quality library publications. Examples of good publications are tipped into the book and additional publications are located in a pocket in the back of the book. Powell writes this about the Holmans: "Cultural revolutionaries are mysterious persons. Who they are, from whence they come, and where they will appear, are all unpredictable.  Who would ever have foretold that a young couple out of Oklahoma and Texas would revolutionize the cultural role of the San Francisco Public Library? That is just what William and Barbara Holman have done to this laggard institution, he by his insistence that good books are basic in library service, she by her taste and skill as a designer and printer."  Library Publications is a book with its own collection of printed library ephemera and a nice addition to my librariana collection.

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