Endgrain Designs & Repetitions: The Pattern Papers of John DePol.
DEPOL, John and Cathleen A. Baker.
Ann Arbor: The Legacy Press, 2015,
First Trade Edition. tall octavo, patterned boards and cloth with printed spine label. 168 pp. The Legacy Press, Item #25147
Beginning in the 1950s, the American master of wood engraving, John DePol (1913–2004), cut small endgrain blocks featuring subjects from Nature, the Heavens, the Book Arts, and fantastical abstract/geometrical designs. Although many of these images were made into patterns and used as binding papers in a number of important fine-press books, the full breadth of this aspect of DePol’s work appeared for the first time in the 2000 limited edition of this book; this aspect of DePol’s work is not included in the Book Club of California’s John DePol: A Catalogue Raisonné published in 2004. The images—117 units with a pattern formed from each—are reproduced in Endgrain Designs & Repetitions as originally conceived by DePol: in beautiful black and white. The book also includes an autobiographical sketch written by DePol, a short essay on the history of patterns in book publishing by Cathleen Baker, and the publication history of the patterns. Except for the color specimens that were included in the limited edition, this offset-printed book features the same text (with some updated information) and units and patterns, as well as a new Preface. New.