Middletown, CT: Price, Robin, 1996. Shaw, Paul. Quarto-sized wooden triptych hinged with vellum strips. With original Polish text calligraphed by Paul Shaw. Titling and the English translation are letterpress printed by Robin Price in Guild Samson uncial and Perpetua. This work is Price's response to Górecki's Symphony No. 3, which is also known as the Symphony of Sorrowful Songs. In it, the composer used three texts for each of the movements: a fifteenth-century Lamentation of the Virgin Mary to her Son on the cross; a short prayer written by an eighteen-year-old girl facing death in a Gestapo prison in Poland; and a nineteenth-century Polish folk song that concerns a mother's mourning for her son lost in battle. At the time, Price was revisiting her Polish ancestery, and so her work, according to her catalogue raisonné, became for her "a reflection on the known and the unknown, on presence and loss." She chose the image of the phoenix to embody the idea of "loss and the mitigation of pain through the strength of the spririt," and she incorporated images from a seventeenth-century ornithological work by Francis Willughby, together with woodcuts by Keiji Shinohara depicting flames. The whole structure is housed in a cherry box with beveled lid. An imaginitive and deeply personal artist's book. (Witthus 55).
(Inventory #: 26837)
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