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The Pilgrimage Series, 4 Volumes, Unique Bindings by Richard Tuttle



The Pilgrimage – 4 Volume Collection Containing The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer, The Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan, On the Road by Jack Kerouac, and The Wanderer by Alain-Fournier

Unique Full Leather Bindings by Richard Tuttle

FINE Condition

Binding Details:  As with all of Richard Tuttle’s pieces, this is a one of a kind binding that captures the spirit of the book and returns us to a time when books were beautiful to display as well as read. In a world of mediocrity and mass produced books, he believes important literary works are special and should be treasured and passed on to future generations.

The Pilgrimage Series – Richard Tuttle in his artist statement for “The Pilgrimage” wrote, “One foot in front of the other. One word in front of the other. We could argue that all writing is pilgrimage. But we will settle for pointing out how much great literature is about the pilgrimage. From Chaucer’s “Canterbury Tales” through Bunyan’s “Pilgrim’s Progress” to Alain-Fournier’s “The Wanderer” and Kerouac’s “On the Road”. These are the first four books in my pilgrimage series which will encompass fifty or more books displayed as a walk through literature and the thoughts that have gotten us where we are and will continue to take us into our future. I walk, and work on the backs of great books. Imprinting my foot into their covers, my hope is to see how far I can walk on them.”

All four books have been rebound by Richard Tuttle in lambskin over sculpted boards that feature his footprints imprinted into the front covers as homage to literature as a pilgrimage. The binding date and artist’s symbol signature appear on the first free endpaper of each book.

The Canterbury Tales measures 10” x 7”, The Pilgrim’s Progress measures 9.5” x 6.5”, On the Road measures 9” x 6”, and The Wanderer measures 10” x 7”

Book Details:  The Canterbury Tales was published by the Heritage Press in 1974 and features a frontispiece by Arthur Szyk.

The Pilgrim’s Progress: From This World to That Which is to Come was published by the Heritage Press in 1969 and features 12 illustrations from watercolors by William Blake.

On the Road was published by the Penguin Group in 1997 and contains the New York Times original review of the book.

The Wanderer: Le Grand Meaulnes was published by the Heritage Press in 1958 and features the illustrations of Dignimont.

Internally, all four books are in FINE condition.

Artist Statements: Included with the books are artist statements by Richard Tuttle on the making of “The Pilgrimage”.

About the Artist: Richard Tuttle is a painter, writer, graphic designer, carpenter, bookbinder and lover of literature. For the past 20 years, he has combined his many interests to create one of a kind works of art that merge the written word with fine leather, paper, paint, wood and veneer. These original book bindings have been exhibited in numerous galleries and were featured in a PBS documentary on the Chicago Art beat. Richard describes his work as follows:  “I make literary artifacts. They are designed to pull books down off the shelf and display them in the salon, gallery or home as if they were works of art, which, of course, they are. Whether binding books with leather, paper, paint, wood, and found artifacts or building sculptures to encase the volumes, I seek to find a perspective that shouts out a piece of the essence of the literary work. I try to put myself in the author's or character's mind to say something about the time it was written in; the attitude that is explored and expressed; the magic that makes it a work of art. While I obviously respect and admire the books I work on, the humor, wit and raw energy I find so attractive in their works leads me to places that some might call disrespectful, but are, for me, essential parts of these literary works. Motivated by Marcel Duchamp's attempts to elevate the object into art and William Blake's efforts to remake his world and James Joyce's efforts to include all culture and all action in one whole: Motivated by the ongoing conversation of Jazz musicians between its earliest practitioners and its most avante garde practitioners: Motivated by the great world library of "what we are" as extolled by Jorge Luis Borges: Motivated by the desire to live in a world that is conscious of itself and conscious of its ability to create itself: I create these art objects out of books in order be surrounded by a physical environment that reflects the world of ideas I want to live in.”

Condition Report: The bindings are in FINE condition.

Photographs of each of the books appear in the photo section of the listing.