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Re: [BKARTS] Copyright issue on bookbinding



Esther,

Your post raises some interesting questions that I suspect other binders have had. I've certainly run up against them. The idea of putting the time, effort and materials that go into a fine binding onto a trade book or, (gasp)even worse - a paperback is not a happy one, yet we don't always have the benefit of a well printed and designed copy of an appropriate text to bind.

While I know that a lot of book artists use inkjet printing, the idea of doing a single copy as your friend suggests doesn't feel right to me. Part of it is the copyright problem; given that Borges died in '86 and left a literary executor I'm pretty sure his work isn't in the public domain. But another part is that you still don't necessarily have a well printed and designed textblock on good paper.

The possibilities I would consider in your situation:

1) A manuscript copy. Even if you don't consider yourself a calligrapher a handwritten copy would be a valid and honest treatment of the text. And I think that a single handwritten copy would be considered fair use, but you might check with someone knowledgeable about that.

2) A book of your images (drawings, paintings, etc.) inspired by the text.

3) A blank book. Seems like cheating but sometimes a good blank book is better than a bad printed book. And if your primary concern is the design on the cover, rather than your response to a specific printed text, a blank book is perfectly acceptable.

Hope this helps a little.

Don Rash

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