Upcoming Events


Exhibition Opening: Food & Wine & Good Design: The California Fine Printers’ Legacy
Monday, September 15, 2014, 5-7 pm

Celebrate the opening of our fall exhibition! With a talk by exhibition curator Randall Tarpey-Schwed.

More information about the exhibition is here.




Take Things Always by Their Smooth Handle and Give Them a Good Turn. Reflections on Life and Libraries with Christian Dupont
Monday, November 3, 2014, 5-7 pm

Presented by the California Rare Book School

In 2006, Rare Book School director Terry Belanger invited Christian Dupont to give a talk about his experiences and “advices” as the newly appointed director of special collections at the University of Virginia. He naturally turned to Thomas Jefferson, and drew upon his “Decalogue of Canons,” a series of ten aphoristic expressions of practical wisdom—some more common, some more obscure—like “take things always by their smooth handle.” Applying this maxim to his own career soon led Christian to join a library software development company to create the first automated system for managing special collections library services. And now it has led him back. In his talk, Christian will reflect on what he has learned about life and libraries and whether Mr. Jefferson would approve.

Following a six-year stint with Atlas Systems, the leading provider of time-saving solutions for libraries, Christian Dupont was recently appointed as Burns Librarian at Boston College. Formerly director of special collections at the University of Virginia and Syracuse University, he embarked on his service to libraries while completing his doctorate in theology at the University of Notre Dame. His research and publication interests range widely from Dante to continental philosophy and the history and management of libraries.


Doctors and Lawyers, Artists and Knights, Philosophers, Princes and Priests: Collecting Early Books and Manuscripts on Professions & Metiers in the 21st Century. An Illustrated Talk by Andrew T. Nadell, M.D.
Monday, November 10, 2014, 5-7 pm

This is a story about building a collection on a subject seemingly too broad: professions, occupations, high offices of state and church, the nobility, the arts, trades, and crafts–the ways educated and skilled people have spent their lives.

As a young man full of completist drive, Dr. Nadell collected works related to the single profession of medicine: thousands of books, pamphlets, and documents on doctors, medical schools, ethics, and quackery. The enlarged subject of all professions offers far more objects to hunt. But age, perhaps wisdom, and especially traditional bibliophilic values–beauty, importance, bindings, provenance–make the captured prey far more select and fine, and the scope is narrowed to the medieval and early modern periods.

For centuries, collectors have lamented the paucity of good old books on the market. Dr. Nadell posits that we are living in a new golden age of collecting. The internet and other technological advances have provided book collectors with unprecedented access to all the sources in the world, every day. Ours is the first generation that has more books to choose from than the generations before.

Andrew T. Nadell left Duke University after four years with three degrees:
Doctor of Medicine from Duke, Master of Science in Sociology from the University of London, and Budding Book Collector advised by Professor of Medical Bibliography G. S. T. Cavanagh. This collection on Professions is the result.

Dr Nadell is in private practice, taught on the Stanford clinical faculty, and served as chairman of psychiatry at Mills Peninsula Medical Center. He is the United States national delegate to the International Society for the History of Medicine, and a member of the Grolier Club, the Association Internationale de Bibliophile, and the Société Royale de Bibliophiles et Iconophiles of Belgium.


Image: Erasmus, Desiderius (1466-1536), Enchiridion militis Christiani, (Antwerp: Michael Hillenium, October 1523), bound with his Institutio principis Christiani, Cologne, August 1523. These famous works are humanistic manuals on how to be a Christian knight, and a Christian prince. Addressed to two young men destined for major Renaissance occupations–an anonymous soldier and the future Emperor Charles V–they offer broad instruction for an honorable and faithful life. Both title pages are signed by the Parisian surgeon and bibliophile, François Rasse des Neux, 1548; the binding is contemporary decorated calf.



Poetry at the Edge: Five Contemporary California Poets. Featuring Kay Ryan, Michael Hannon, Martha Ronk, Joseph Stroud, and Gary Young.
Monday, November 17, 2014, 5-7 pm

Celebrate the publication of BCC publication number 232. With remarks by editor and designer Carolee Campbell, and readings by the five poets featured in the book.

More information about the event and the publication coming soon.

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