Recommendations for fine art facsimiles and artist books?
October 20, 2013 1:00 PM   Subscribe

I am interested in buying some beautiful facsimiles of illuminated manuscripts and artist's books. Do you have any recommendations, particularly for affordable ones? I can pay up to about $100 / book, but not the thousands of dollars that some facsimiles cost. Any leads would be most appreciated.
posted by mortaddams to Society & Culture (6 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
bayeux tapestry
posted by bq at 1:12 PM on October 20, 2013

I would suggest eBay and/or developing a good relationship with a secondhand or specialty bookseller (who can keep an eye out for you), since the resale value on some facsimiles (including some older repros) is less. If you haven't seen it, maybe spend some time on or another compilation site and keep a list of volumes or publishers that you're interested in? They definitely trend towards the higher-end market, but I think especially if you look carefully on abebooks and are willing to purchase from international sellers, you may have more luck. When you say artist's books, what kinds of books are you looking for?
posted by jetlagaddict at 1:27 PM on October 20, 2013

Carl Jung's heirs refused to allow even scholars to see his illuminated personal spiritual work the Liber Novus (commonly known as the Red Book) until 2001. After that dam-breaking they were persuaded to allow the scanning of a facsimile, which came out in 2009. It's a truly beautiful edition and has an English translation inside. Amazon are selling them new for $152 but you might be able to find a second-hand copy on Ebay.
posted by pickingupsticks at 4:07 PM on October 20, 2013

The Getty has had a few facsimiles of works over the years, which are around a hundred and exquisite. Check out their bookstore.
posted by effluvia at 5:31 PM on October 20, 2013

Masterpieces of Illumination: The World's Most Famous Manuscripts 400 To 1600 is an inexpensive sampler of various illuminated manuscripts.

The Getty's edition of the Mira Calligraphiae Monumenta is lovely but seems to be out of print - although there appear to be used copies within your budget.

There's a not too pricey edition of the Farnese Hours out there, though again it seems to be out of print.

I can’t vouch for them but there are some60s/’70s facsimiles from the publisher George Braziller seem reasonably-priced, and reasonably well-reviewed.

A more modern manuscript is the Codex Seraphinianus.
posted by misteraitch at 1:28 AM on October 21, 2013

And, not a true facsimile, but a reconstruction combining a printed translation into English with reproductions of the original illuminations: Bestiary: Being an English Version of the Bodleian Library, Oxford, MS Bodley 764.
posted by misteraitch at 3:47 AM on October 21, 2013

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