PublicationsRecent and forthcoming published works on Bewick
The Many Faces of Bewick and the Bicentenary of his Water Birds
‘The Many Faces of Bewick and the Bicentenary of his Water Birds’ in Transactions of the Natural History Society of Northumbria, Volume 65 part 3, March 2007 (available from the Natural History Society of Northumbria, Hancock Museum, Newcastle upon Tyne NE2 4PT). 'The Many Faces of Bewick' (pp.135 – 224) is a complete catalogue raisonné illustrated in colour of all the known portraits of Thomas Bewick and his associates, by June Holmes, archivist to the Natural History Society. ‘The Bicentenary of Thomas Bewick’s History of British Birds’ (pp 225 – 254) is an illustrated essay celebrating the 1804 publication of the Water Birds, by David Gardner-Medwin.
Copies of this book can be bought from June Holmes, NHSN Archivist. (£7.50 + p&p)
Thomas Bewick Tale-Pieces catalogue from Ikon Gallery, 2009.
This catalogue accompanies the first exhibition devoted entirely to the vignettes of the extraordinary British artist-engraver and naturalist Thomas Bewick (1753 - 1828). Bewick's tale-pieces were cut into the end-grain of blocks of box-wood, an exceptionally close-grained hard wood conductive to a graphic fineness. The fact that the blocks were sections through lengths of timber meant that the pictures could not be anything but small, but this restriction by no means cramped the artist's style. On the contrary, Bewick developed a meticulousness whereby the slightest nuances could be conveyed through the tiny lines he left in relief after engraving. Amongst his most ambitious projects were illustrations for General History of Quadrupeds (1790) and History of British Birds (two volumes, 1797 and 1804), both of which also included a great number of vignettes.
You can purchase the catalogue from the gallery website here.
The Bewick Society was delighted to publish its own book in December 2003: Bewick Studies, Essays in Celebration of the 250th Anniversary of the birth of Thomas Bewick, edited by David Gardner-Medwin, with various authors including Ian Bain and Nigel Tattersfield. This was accomplished with funding from Frank Sharratt and Kerr-McGee North Sea (UK) Ltd. Copies of this prestigious volume were sent free to all Bewick Society members who had joined before November 2003. The book was set in type by Iain Bain using Monotype Bulmer.
Dixon, Hugh. Thomas Bewick at 250: landmarks in the building of a reputation. (pp. 9-22)
Bain, Iain. The correspondence of Thomas Bewick. (pp. 23-50)
Gardner-Medwin, David. The library of Thomas Bewick. (pp. 51-72)
Tattersfield, Nigel. Fresh light on the ingenious Beilbys. (pp. 73-84)
Tattersfield, Nigel. Alexander Anderson, the first American wood engraver: a brief sketch of his earlier career and his debt to Thomas and John Bewick. (pp. 85-94)
Carlisle, Graham. The American connection: the dispersal of Bewick's engraved wood blocks since 1942. (pp. 95-110)
Quinn, Peter. Their strongest pine: Thomas Bewick and regional identity in the late nineteenth century. (pp. 111-30)
Newton, Laura The Bewick Club and the Cullercoats connection (pp. 131-49).
Further copies of the book are still available from the Bewick Society at £20 + £2.50 p&p. Contact June Holmes, The Bewick Society, Hancock Museum, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE2 4PT or email@example.com
Nature’s Engraver – A Life of Thomas Bewick
Jenny Uglow, London: Faber and Faber, 2006 (hardback edition); 2007 (paperback edition). This is better illustrated than any previous biography of Bewick, with one hundred vignettes, fifty figures and thirty three colour illustrations including some of Bewick's watercolour artwork. There is a full list of the workshop apprentices, a bibliography, notes and index. Reviewers have all commented on its readability, comprehensive coverage and penetrating grasp of the relevant cultural history.
Thomas Bewick in Newcastle: A guide to the places in and around the city associated with the artist. (A2 folded 2x6 to produce 24 pages)
The Society created, as part of the 250th anniversary celebrations, a leaflet, which all Bewick enthusiasts will find fascinating. We were delighted to receive a 'Heritage Lottery Fund Awards for All' grant to pay for the printing.
This fold-out leaflet is designed to be used as a guide to exploring the city on foot and draws attention to many little-known places such as the sites of the various homes where Bewick lived, his workshops and his parish church, favourite pubs, and the publishing houses where his works were printed. The text has been written to be of interest to a wide public while also reflecting the results of careful historical research.
It is illustrated with nine drawings by the Newcastle artist, Mrs Joan Holding, as well as a number of engravings by Bewick and his pupils. There is a reproduction of part of the map surveyed in 1770 by the Newcastle cartographer Charles Hutton (who is said to have shown Bewick the technique of wood engraving) as well as a modern street map marked with the twenty-eight principal sites of interest.
The leaflet also has information about Bewick’s birthplace at Cherryburn and about Ovingham where he went to school.
The leaflets is distributed free of charge to interested members of the public and are available at the Newcastle City Library Reception and at the Newcastle Tourist Information Centre at 132 Grainger Street.
It is hoped that Thomas Bewick in Newcastle will encourage people to explore their city with new eyes, and enable them to find places they have never seen or noticed before – while at the same time learning more about Bewick and his many friends and colleagues.
For more leaflets contact June Holmes, The Bewick Society, Hancock Museum, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE2 4PT
Thomas Bewick 1753–1828 Tyneside Artist and Engraver by Douglas Glendinning, Anna Flowers & Anthony Flowers (2003)
Tyne Bridge Publishing (link)
Tyne Bridge Publishing at Newcastle City Libraries produced a well illustrated paperback book Thomas Bewick 1753-1828 Tyneside Artist and Engraver by Douglas Glendinning, Anna Flowers & Anthony Flowers (2003), with many colour pictures from the Newcastle City Library and Natural History Society of Northumbria archives.
Copies are still available from Newcastle Libraries £6.99 or direct from Tyne Bridge Publishing (0191 2774174). email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thomas Bewick: The Blocks Revisited & Rediscovered
In 1942 the Ward Collection of Bewick Blocks was sold at auction to an American purchaser and they were sent to Chicago where they were eventually divided between three main collections. William Hesterberg, who operates his own small press and publishing company in Evanston (north Chicago), will be producing a book to account for what has happened to all these blocks. Mr Hesterberg is printing and publishing it himself in early 2009 in a small limited edition. Information as to cost is not yet available.
The Blocks Revisited & Rediscovered documents the fascinating story of Thomas Bewick's personal blocks and their historic journey to Chicago in 1942. Many of these blocks found new homes quickly in the Midwest and across America, while others became well-travelled eventually making their way back to England. The whereabouts of these blocks and their movements over the years have raised questions and a desire to document them for their safe keeping. It is hoped this five year investigation will begin to provide answers, as over 700 of the 1,350 blocks that came to Chicago are documented here in 35 collections.
The Blocks Revisited & Rediscovered measures 6.5 x 10 inches and contains eighty pages which include fourteen original blocks printed on dampened Rives Heavy-weight paper using a Washington Hand Press. The remaining thirty-five Bewick illustrations were printed using a Vandercook Press from metal engravings reproduced from the Memorial Edition. The text, set in a digital version of Bulmer, was also printed from metal engravings. Color photographs of Bewick's portrait and his toolbox were included as tip ins, along with a group photographed of blocks at the Hesterberg Press.
A numbered edition of ninety copies was bound by Campbell-Logan Bindery, Minneapolis, in a dark green cloth with contrasting green end papers. The spine was gold stamped and the front cover features an inset of a vignette printed from one of the Bewick's blocks at the press.
This information comes from the Oak Knoll Press website. Click here for more details and the opportunity to purchase the book.