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Barbarian Press
Past Publications

Wood engraving by Andy English
(from The Eve of St. Agnes, 2003)

Many of the titles published by Barbarian Press in the past are now out of print. Descriptions and publication details of some of those titles are available here for your perusal.

Please note that all of these books are

Cover scan
En Route to the 53rd
National Iguana Competition
Being Held, This Year,
in Gila Bend, Arizona

Click above
for additional images

Endgrain Editions Two:
Abigail Rorer

November 2001

This is the second in our ongoing series of books on individual wood engravers.

Abigail Rorer studied at the Rhode Island School of Design, and is active as an illustrator, using drawing, painting and etching as well as wood engraving. Her work has appeared in books from Houghton-Mifflin, Henry Holt, Little Brown & Company, Counterpoint, W.W. Norton, The University of California Press, and many others, as well as in private press limited editions from Colin Press, Catawba Press, and her own Lone Oak Press. We first saw her work when we included her engraving “The Founding Members of the Bonsai Society” in Endgrain: Contemporary Wood Engraving in North America (1995).

Abigail Rorer began making woodcuts in high school, and went on to explore with fascination first the wood cuts and engravings of Dürer, and later of the German Expressionists, particularly Ernst Barlach and Ernst Ludwig Kirschner, to which she attributes her penchant for black-line engraving. [Black-line engraving is engraving in which the lines of the image are left raised to take ink, and everything else is cut away; it is the opposite of white-line engraving, in which the image’s lines are incised into the block, and thus appear as white lines when the block is printed. Of the examples of Abigail Rorer’s work shown on the detail page, “Bat and Agave” is a white-line engraving and "The Founding Members of the Bonsai Society" is black-line.]

In the introduction to this book, Rorer writes that her work “... seems to be divided into two general themes: nature and the human condition.” Many of her engravings are inspired by old daguerrotypes and photographs. She has a zestful eye for texture, and her work shows an enchantment with “minute detail, every fold in a dress, every hair on an animals’s head, every flake of bark on a tree trunk ...”. (The textural details in the women’s clothing in “The Founding Members of the Bonsai Society” is a fine example of this delight.) As well as having a fascination with people and animals, Rorer is a devoted gardener, and has made many superb engravings of flowers and trees, and especially of succulents, a major interest.

Bat and Agave
Click above for additional images

Endgrain Editions Two: Abigail Rorer includes fifty-one blocks, including two hand-coloured by the artist, and one multiple-block three-colour image. As in every volume in this series, there are three specially commissioned blocks for the book: a patterned paper (which looks like a Victorian wallpaper – until you look closely); a frontispiece; and a new version of our press device.

Abigail Rorer’s engravings are searching, technically dazzling, witty, and beautiful, and we are very proud to be publishing this first book devoted entirely to her work as an engraver.

“... I'm bowled over by the engravings. I caught sight of “White Pine” early on, and spoke out loud -- pleasure! The variety and cleverness of her technique are stimulating, and I'm just very happy to have the book. And as always, impeccably printed.”
Simon Lawrence, The Fleece Press, Yorkshire, England

“ ...a stunning collection of prints and the binding is simply beautiful. ... I am thoroughly impressed and was unexpectedly amused (chuckling out loud kind of amused) by many of Ms. Rorer's engravings. ...I'm pleased to have your beautiful volume commerating her exceptional work. To my eye, some of her prints are rivaled only by Moser ...”
James Gifford, Subscriber, Hawaii, USA

“The book is so well constructed and elegant ... we are very pleased to have it. ... It is a treasure and a wonderful addition to our growing collection of Barbarian Press books.”
Walter Bachinski and Janis Butler, Shanty Bay Press, Ontario, Canada

“You have done it again! What a wonderful second book for the series!”
Diana Thomas, Collector & Printer, California, USA

“[the Deluxe edition] is absolutely beautiful. The wood cuts are stunning. ... It is obvious that Barbarian Press takes pride in craftsmanship and quality ...”
Daniel Gregg, Subscriber, Mississippi, USA

“What a beautifully wrought book Endgrain Editions Two: Abigail Rorer is. The engravings offer so much to enjoy and admire on many levels and the patterned paper is superb. You have set yourselves such a high standard with One and Two that I relish future editions.”
Dave Howarth, Subscriber, Lancashire, England

Deluxe edition: Text hand set in Joanna roman and italic, with Fournier Ornée and Bembo with Meadow Border for display. Fifty-one engravings printed from the wood; two hand-coloured by the artist with Nancy Campbell, and one press-coloured from three blocks. Black and blue on Zerkall Cream Laid and Book White Wove papers. Tipped in frontispiece. Hand bound by Simone Mijnen in quarter royal blue morocco with patterned paper over boards, gold-stamped leather label on spine, with a signed and numbered proof of the frontispiece in a handmade paper folder, slipcased.
10 ½ by 7 ½ inches [267 by 191 mm]
124 pages. 60 copies     OUT OF PRINT

Regular edition: Quarter bound by Rasmussen Bindery
in dark blue Japanese silk and patterned paper,
printed label on spine, with a tipped-in frontispiece.
10 by 7 inches. [267 by 191 mm]
124 pages. 150 copies
C$275; approx. US$240     OUT OF PRINT