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Borges, Jorge Luis (Author); Shakespeare, William; Nietzsche, Friedrich & Steidl, Gerhard . DIE BIBLIOTHEK VON BABEL/THE LIBRARY OF BABEL. Gottingen, Germany: Gerhard Steidl Druckerei Und Verlag, 2001. Hardcover. First Edition/First Printing. 100 pages. Fine/Fine.

Artist Book. One of the most beautiful Artist Books of our time. The first appearance of the title in this edition. Precedes and should not be confused with all other subsequent editions. Published in a very small and limited first print run as a hardcover original only. There is no American or British Edition. The First Edition is now rare. A brilliant production by Gerhard Steidl and Buchergilde Gutenberg: Regular-sized volume format. Gray cloth boards with original art embossed on the front board's center and titles embossed on spine, as issued. Short story by Jorge Luis Borges, interspersed with text excerpts from William Shakespeare and Friedrich Nietszche. The entire text is in German. The English translation is printed on white bond paper and enclosed in its own plastic sheet. Art by Gerhard Steidl and Buchergilde Gutenberg. Printed on thick uncoated stock paper in Gottingen, Germany to the highest standards. In pictorial DJ with titles on the cover and spine, as issued. Re-presents "The Library of Babel", one of the greatest essay-stories ever written, as an Artist Book that celebrates typography as the basis of the printed word. Borges' story is reproduced at the center of the book, preceded and followed by various sequences exploring typography's dazzling possibilities. They suggest (because they can never really exhaust) the inventiveness and infinity that are inherent to the typographer's art, an art that parallels the book's own infinite possibilities. Gerhard Steidl and Buchergilde Gutenberg are not typographers-gone-wild. On the contrary, they restrain their fantastic exploration of typeface-as-visual by setting it against a rigorous grid format on every page, which lists, one after another, every known human language, from German to English to French, from Kisuaheli to Nahuatl to Pilipino. Restraint and consistency yield elegance, which remains the highest ideal of typography. The excerpts by Nietzsche and Shakespeare also show how typeface, which is something we normally take for granted, captures the very character of both author and text. Every book has a note appended at the end about the typeface that was used. The note is there, but hardly anyone notices it. "Die Bibliothek von Babel" compels our attention just this once, by turning the note into the heart and soul of the book, an authentic visual interpretation of and homage to Jorge Luis Borges' great story. After all, typeface (an invented set of characters for an alphabet) and typography (the arrangement of that invention) are the very foundation of the book and therefore, of every library, even Borges' "feverish library, whose random volumes constantly threaten to transmogrify into others, so that they affirm all things, deny all things, like some mad and hallucinating deity". An absolute "must-have" title for Jorge Luis Borges and book lover/collectors. This title is now highly collectible. As far as we know, this is the only copy of the First Hardcover Edition/First Printing available online and is in especially fine condition: Clean, crisp, and bright, a pristine beauty. A rare copy thus. Jorge Luis Borges' body of work is regarded by Harold Bloom, George Steiner, and Susan Sontag as among the canonical works of modern literature. One of the greatest writers of the 20th century. A fine collectible copy. (SEE ALSO OTHER JORGE LUIS BORGES TITLES IN OUR CATALOG). ISBN 3882437782. $300.00

This item is available for purchase. This web page was most recently updated on May 23, 2017.