Upcoming Events

*Unless otherwise noted, all events take place at the Book Club of California and are free and open to the public. Please refer to the description under each event.

Email programs@bccbooks.org for any questions, or call (415) 781-7532 ext. 3

Fair Warning – Auction Secrets Revealed
Monday, August 13, 2018, 5–7 PM

Hospitality at 5 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

Buying and selling at an auction can be a great way to add to a collection or divest it of duplicates. For the uninitiated, it can be a daunting experience. Sharon Gee, President of PBA Galleries, will help demystify the auction process in a presentation that will cover a brief history of auctions, different types of auctions, the selling or consigning procedures, and how to buy at live auctions.

Sharon Gee is the President and CEO of PBA Galleries, a rare and collectible book auction house located in San Francisco.

A co-presentation by the California Rare Book School.

To RSVP, please complete this form.

Exhibition Opening: Nautical Fiction, Covers, Colors, and Contents
Monday, August 20, 2018, 5–7 PM

Hospitality at 5 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

David Wingfield Pettus has been collecting books for more than 45 years. In that time he has assembled what many believe to be the most comprehensive collection of nautical fiction in the world.

Like many collectors, his primary focus is on the great literature contained within the covers of the rare volumes he acquires. But, again, like most collectors, he cannot help but be attracted to the bindings, the illustrations, and evocative ephemera that naturally come his way in the course of his collecting.

This Book Club exhibit is dedicated to a selection of those items – visually resonant pieces that particularly compliment David’s love of the sea, the ship, and the sailor – art and artifacts that convey the adventure, loneliness, and beauty found on the “endless immensity of the sea”.

With remarks by curator David Pettus, author and collector.

To RSVP, please complete this form.

Consuming Identities: Visual Culture in Nineteenth-Century San Francisco
Monday, August 27, 2018, 5–7 PM

Hospitality at 5 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

Between the gold rush and the 1906 earthquake and fire, new forms of visual media emerged and came to constitute a central means by which people navigated the bewildering host of changes taking hold around them. University of Chicago History Professor Amy Lippert will explore the power and significance of imagery in San Francisco—a city in the vanguard of the modern era.

An illustrated talk by Amy Lippert, historian and professor at University of Chicago.

To RSVP, please complete this form.

Los Angeles City Hall: An American Icon
Wednesday, September 12, 2018, 5:30–7 PM

*A Southern California program

Hospitality at 5:30 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

Los Angeles City Hall is among the most iconic buildings in America; some say, the world. A bold symbol of the ambition of America and its people, City Hall graces California as one of its most enduring landmarks. Now comes the definitive book chronicling its history, ​Los Angeles City Hall: An American Icon ​by Stephen Gee.

In the pages of ​Los Angeles City Hall: An American Icon, author Stephen Gee shares the dramatic saga of the building’s creation and showcases the architecture, artwork, and details that define City Hall in more than 200 lavish images, blueprints, and drawings—many of them never-before published. Gee also chronicles the effort to restore the building and the political fight that preceded its return to glory.

As Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti states in his Foreword: “So much history has been made beneath these muraled ceilings. So many people have walked these marble floors and transformed our city with their ideas, energy, and passion. And that work continues today…”

A talk by Stephen Gee, writer and television producer.

At the Women’s City Club of Pasadena, 160 N. Oakland Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91101

To RSVP, please complete this form.

Mallette Dean, A Printermaker and His Art
Monday, September 17, 2018, 5–7 PM

Hospitality at 5 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

An illustrated talk by John Hawk, head librarian, Special Collections & University Archives at the University of San Francisco.

To RSVP, please complete this form.

Meet Mr. Blake: A Presentation on the Life and Art of William Blake (1757-1828) and his Influence Worldwide to this Day
Monday, September 24, 2018, 5–7 PM

Hospitality at 5 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

An illustrated talk by John Windle, proprietor, John Windle Antiquarian Bookseller.

Details to come.

Mallette Dean, a Printmaker and His Art
Wednesday, September 26, 2018, 5:30–7 PM

*A Southern California program

Hospitality at 5:30 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

An illustrated talk by John Hawk, head librarian, Special Collections & University Archives at the University of San Francisco.

At the Women’s City Club of Pasadena, 160 N. Oakland Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91101

To RSVP, please complete this form.

Writing is Innocent: Chinese in the Age of Typewriting, Computing, and Beyond
Monday, October 1, 2018, 5–7 PM

Hospitality at 5 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

Chinese writing is character based, the one major world script that is neither alphabetic nor syllabic. Through the years, the Chinese written language encountered presumed alphabetic universalism in the form of Morse Code, Braille, stenography, Linotype, punch cards, word processing, and other systems developed with the Latin alphabet in mind. In his recent book, Stanford historian Thomas S. Mullaney examines those encounters—in particular thousands of Chinese characters versus the typewriter and its QWERTY keyboard. He describes a fascinating series of experiments, prototypes, failures, and successes in the century-long quest for a workable Chinese typewriter.

He also looks the present-day and the future. Today, after more than a century of resistance against the alphabetic, not only have Chinese characters prevailed, they form the linguistic substrate of the vibrant world of Chinese information technology.

An illustrated talk by Thomas S. Mullaney, historian and professor at Stanford University.

Member Exhibit: California the Wonderful
Wednesday, October 3, 2018, 5-6:30 PM

Hospitality and viewing at 5 PM | Remarks at 5:30 PM

This exhibit showcases California books in decorated publisher’s bindings from the 1880’s to 1920’s – books about the Golden State from the Golden Age of book cover art. The books in the collection vary in subject matter, they describe California’s “… romantic history, her picturesque people, her wild shores, her desert mystery, her valley loveliness, her mountain glory, […] her varied resources, her commercial greatness, her intellectual achievements, her expanding hopes” – as Edwin Markham so modestly states in the subtitle to his book “California The Wonderful”!

Ulrich Hacker has been a reader and book collector from an early age on; as his interests widened he began to appreciate books not just for their content, but also as objects of art and design – “handsome books”. This collection will contain several cover variants: variations in color scheme and gilting, titling, layout, borders, etc.

An exhibition of books on California with remarks by collector and Book Club member Ulrich Hacker.

An Introduction to the Field Atlas and the Polarizing of Geographic Literacy
Monday, October 8, 2018, 5–7 PM

Hospitality at 5 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

Written by artist and naturalist Obi Kaufmann, the bestselling California Field Atlas incorporates equal parts art and analysis in its loving prose, bright paintings, and unique, cartographic portrayals of the state. The book has been awarded the 2016 James D. Phelan Award from the San Francisco Foundation, the 2017 Book of the Year award from the Northern California Independent Booksellers Association, and the 2017 Gold Medal for Significant Contribution to Publishing by the Commonwealth Club of San Francisco.

With its unique structure and feel, and with hundreds of hand painted maps and wildlife renderings in watercolor, the California Field Atlas has found popularity with not only Californians already in love with their state’s superlative natural-world, but those who have yet to be introduced. The author describes the work as not only a love story, but “a manual of conservation, a handbook to furthering geographic literacy as a baseline towards a much larger plan for California and its collective, ecological resiliency.” Having spent decades hiking and painting California’s backcountry, Obi’s intimate and nuanced presentation where nature is the main character, resounds with love and hope, describing those systems of earth, air, fire and water that feed the deep well of California’s persistent yet endangered biodiversity.

Obi Kaufmann brings his book to the Book Club of California with an introductory lecture describing its purpose and structure. He will walk through the process of the book’s conception and creation and present a bit of what is next for both the author and for California.

An illustrated talk by Obi Kaufmann, book artist.

Rock N Roll Billboards of the Sunset Strip
Wednesday, October 10, 2018, 5:30–7 PM

*A Southern California program

Hospitality at 5:30 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

“Before YouTube and social media, rock acts had to work harder to make a visual impact. One way to do it was through billboards on the Sunset Strip in Hollywood: Advertisements for albums that were gorgeous hand-painted rock dreams above the traffic. Photographer Robert Landau grew up in L.A. and, starting as a teenager, documented the large-scale images. Now his book, Rock ‘n’ Roll Billboards of the Sunset Strip, tells the history of rock iconography that shone through the Hollywood smog.” – Gavin Edwards, Rolling Stone

An illustrated talk by Robert Landau, photographer.

At the Women’s City Club of Pasadena, 160 N. Oakland Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91101

Left Photograph: The Beatles, 1969 by Robert Landau.

The Bonanza King: John McKay and the Battle over the Greatest Riches in the American West
Monday, October 15, 2018, 5–7 PM

Hospitality at 5 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

Born in 1831, John W. Mackay was a penniless Irish immigrant who came of age in New York City, went to California during the Gold Rush, and mined without much luck for eight years. When he heard of riches found on the other side of the Sierra Nevada Mountains in 1859, Mackay abandoned his claim and walked a hundred miles to the Comstock Lode in Nevada.

Over the course of the next dozen years, Mackay worked his way up from nothing, thwarting the pernicious “Bank Ring” monopoly to seize control of the most concentrated cache of precious metals ever found on earth, the legendary “Big Bonanza,” a stupendously rich body of gold and silver ore discovered 1,500 feet beneath the streets of Virginia City, the ultimate Old West boomtown.

Gregory Crouch tells Mackay’s amazing story—how he extracted the ore from deep underground and used his vast mining fortune to crush the transatlantic telegraph monopoly of the notorious Jay Gould. When Mackay died in 1902, front-page obituaries in Europe and the United States hailed him as one of the most admired Americans of the age. Featuring great period photographs and maps, The Bonanza King is a dazzling tour de force, a riveting history of Virginia City, Nevada, the Comstock Lode, and America itself.

A talk by Gregory Crouch, author of The Bonanza King.

A co-presentation by the 2018 Litquake Literary Festival.

Paul Robertson Endowed Lecture on the History, Art, and Literature of California
Monday, October 22, 2018, 5–7 PM

Hospitality at 5 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

Prints of the California Gold Rush
An Illustrated talk by Gary Kurutz, executive director, California State Library Foundation.

To RSVP, please complete this form.

Evening in the Library: Felonious Folios: Books on Murder & Crime
Monday, October 29, 2018, 5–7 PM

Hospitality at 5 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

A talk by Elizabeth Newsom, librarian, Book Club of California.

Details to come.

Kenneth Karmiole Endowed Lecture on the History of the Book Trade in California and the West
Monday, November 5, 2018, 5–7 PM

Hospitality at 5 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

A Rare Book Rogue in Texas: The Crimes and Misdemeanors of Johnny Jenkins
An illustrated talk by Michael Vinson, author and proprietor, Michael Vinson Americana.

To RSVP, please complete this form.

Kenneth Karmiole Endowed Lecture on the History of the Book Trade in California and the West
Thursday, November 8, 2018, 7:30–9 PM

*A Southern California program

A Rare Book Rogue in Texas: The Crimes and Misdemeanors of Johnny Jenkins
An illustrated talk by Michael Vinson, author and proprietor, Michael Vinson Americana.

To RSVP, please complete this form.

At the Huntington Library Art Collections and Botanical Gardens Rothenberg Hall
Steve S. Koblik Education and Visitor Center
1151 Oxford Road San Marino, Ca 91108

To RSVP, please complete this form.

Joe De Yong: A Life in the West
Wednesday, November 14, 2018, 5:30–7 PM

*A Southern California program

Hospitality at 5:30 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

Joe De Yong: A Life in the West is the story of a passionate cowboy’s life in the America West during the first part of the last century. Over ten years of research has revealed the life of a relatively unknown artist/illustrator who started out to be “just a cowboy.” Joe De Yong touched the lives many in the western art world of the 1920s through the late 1960s. His was a life of challenges, including overcoming cerebral meningitis in 1913 that left him totally deaf. De Yong went on to become the only protégé of his artistic hero – the legendary Montana artist, Charles M. Russell. He also made a life in the movie business working with Cecil B. DeMille and many others.

An illustrated talk by William Reynolds, author and historian.

At the Women’s City Club of Pasadena, 160 N. Oakland Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91101

Painted Pages
Monday, November 19, 2018, 5–7 PM

Hospitality at 5 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

From designing Snoopy calendars to illustrating Gertrude Stein for The Yolla Bolly Press, the speaker has stumbled from one mistake to another, finally arriving at the production of paintings, sculpture, and one-of-a-kind, hand-painted books. The talk includes the wife of the governor of Nebraska describing the artist’s work as “the dirtiest thing you’ve ever seen;” remembrances of an afternoon spent with M.F.K. Fischer (while illustrating her Two Kitchens in Provence); and the recent accidental sale of his book of Trump quotations (Hate Is What We Need) to Chronicle Books. The talk is 30 minutes and the evening concludes with a book signing of Hate Is What We Need.

An illustrated talk by Ward Schumaker, artist and book-painter.

Exhibition Opening: The Joy of Giving: Christmas Chapbooks
Monday, December 3, 2018, 5–7 PM

Hospitality at 5 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

With remarks by curator Alan Dye, proprietor, Noble Impressions.

Details to come.

Paul Robertson Endowed Lecture on the History, Art, and Literature of California
Wednesday, December 12, 2018, 5:30–7 PM

*A Southern California program

Hospitality at 5:30 PM | Presentation at 6 PM

Prints of the California Gold Rush
An illustrated talk by Gary Gurutz, executive director, California State Library Foundation.

At the Women’s City Club of Pasadena, 160 N. Oakland Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91101

To RSVP, please complete this form.

 

Details to come. Please check back for updates or subscribe to our newsletter to receive the latest information on events, exhibitions, and publications.

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