Jungle Garden Press ~ California
(Marie Dern)


by Marie Dern
2005. Edition of 10.
10 x 13.5" with eleven pages - title page plus one page per number one through 10. Each number uses a different font. Pages laid in paper covered boards with title on front board. Title of "1, 2" is on paper to resemble a chalkboard.

Dern uses the nursery rhyme 1, 2 Buckle My Shoe to produce a lovely wood type book. Each of the numbers 1 through 10 has its own page using a different wood type. The book is produced like a portfolio of wood type so that the pages are not bound but laid in a binder with a ribbon tie.

1, 2 Buckle my shoe.
3, 4 Shut the door.
5, 6 Pick up sticks.
7, 8 Lay them straight.
9, 10 Big fat hen.           


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Seeing Things
Poetry by Emily Dickinson
Book design by Marie Dern
2005. Edition of 10.

5 x 5", 30 pages including free end papers. Bembo type printed letterpress. Bound by hand with pastepaper covers.

This small edition book by Marie Dern is an Emily Dickinson poem with minimalist interpretative illustration.
$200 (Last Copy)


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Seven Stones at the Hill of the Witch: photographs
by Jean McMann
2005. Edition of 100.
9.5 x 9.5" with 11 sheets including title and colophon laid in a clamshell box. Box covered in green raw silk made by John Demerritt and Kris Langan. Letterpress text printed by Marie Dern. The 9 x 9" carbon-based pigment prints were made by Urban Digital Design in San Francisco.

This series of seven portraits of Irish kerbstones were photographed by Jean McMann. Kerbstones are part of a prehistoric ceremonial center about 50 miles northwest of Dublin at a place called Loughcre of Sliabh na Calli (the hill of the witch or hag). Along the crest of this hilly ridge are ruins of at least 35 stone structures now called cairns or passage chambers built around 5,500 years ago during the Neolithic Period.

These cairns and the symbols carved in stone by their makers have been the primary subject of Jean McMann's work as a photographer and scholar ever since she first visited Loughcrew in 1976. Her dissertation for her PhD in History of Architecture from the University of California at Berkeley focused on the plans and history of the site. But her most powerful means of connection has always been the camera.

From Jean McMann:
I photographed these kerbstones again and again from 1989 to 1992, lying behind my splayed tripod in the wet grass of Irish summer mornings. They stand on the rest of a hilly ridge now mostly called Loughcrew, about fifty miles southwest of Dublin in county Meath, Ireland. For centuries the place was known as Slieve na Callighe or Sliabh na Cailli (the hillof the witch or hag). The stones are part of a Neolithic ceremonial center, a site of veneration and pilgrimage built sometime around 5,500 years ago to house and honor the dead. It also may have served as a tribute or means of connection to the sun, moon, stars, as well as to the earth and its seasons. Together with sacred architecture worldwide, the many stone monuments in ruins at Loughcrew speak to us of the purpose and meaning of human existence - our births and deaths, the deeds and events of our lives over time. Deep-rooted and comforting, these stones represent the power of human imagination and our connection to the cosmos.


Winter Orchard
by Marie Dern and Carl Dern
2005. Edition of 60.

One 6 x 8 x 3.75" metal tree sculpture and one two-sided accordion 4.25 x 10.5" book housed in 12.75 x 11.25 x 3.5" sawn-pine box. Book composed of
nine panels featuring 18 drawings. Type is Bembo. Drawings printed with photopolymer plates an printed on Arches watercolor paper. Sculpture made of
steel, brass and tin. Binding by John De Merritt. Box design by Marie Dern. Lid to box hinged for opening with cord. Interior divided into two compartments for holding sculpture on right and book on left. Book wrapped in lightweight white gauzy snowflake design Japanese paper. Sculpture nestled in the same paper.

A collaboration of husband and wife, Carl and Marie Dern. The accordion book of Carl's drawings can be moved around to form various configurations to simulate an orchard setting. Carl's accompanying metal tree sculpture can be placed 'among' the pages or off to the side.

Simple, elegant, appropriately stark. A nice combination of the book and sculptural art.

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2004. Edition of 10 copies. Printed letterpress. Collage and vignettes about hairdos. Accordion book bound by Marie Dern. Fine, in paper covered boards with raffia tied at board ends to simulate hair. Enclosed with a paper wrap tied with raffia.



POEM is literally a poem in a box. Each page is a letter of the word POEM, conceived because of some donated wood type. Printed on deckled Twin Rocker paper where the type leaves a shadow because of the bite. A conceptual piece in a gray cloth box measuring 9 inches square. Edition of 5. 2002.


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Metta Fugue
Another original book from Marie Dern with her special stamp, this time about loving-kindness. A Buddhist prayer is said out loud (or silently) to request the well being for others (and oneself.) Presented in a red paper wrapper 4 x 6 inches, is a dialogue or fugue between the sutra and what is going on in Marie's head (which is mostly irreverent and amusing!) Hand bound. 30 copies. 2003.

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Believe it or Not
Poems by Kay Ryan. With drawings by Carl Dern. Ryan's entertaining poems were penned in response to a selection of absurdities from Ripley's Believe It or Not. Ryan, a Ripley's fan, owns many of Ripley's collections and set herself the task of writing a poem a day based on a reading from one of the books. Of the hundreds she wrote, some have been previously published, but this collection is new. Her witty verse renderings each include, as epigraph, the bizarre fact from Ripley's that inspired the quote. Many of the poems are accompanied by Carl Dern's delightful drawings. Letterpress printed from handset Bell type on Lana watercolor paper. Dern's drawings were transferred to polymer plates and printed in a variety of colors. Handbound in red cloth over boards with black cloth spine and gold-stamped spine title. An large, inset exclamation point illustrates the cover as well as the title page. Edition of 125. (5 x 10.75 inches; 30 pp.) 2002. As ever, publisher & printer Marie Dern's sense of whimsy and play is evident!
 Petites Histoires
A portfolio edition of stories by Marie Dern with prints by Inez Storer. Dern's tales begins shipboard, on the Liberté as she embarks upon a post-collegiate year abroad in France. "Leaning against the rail I cried too, with joy. Liberté, liberty at last, unfettered, unrestrained, wild as a March hare, impervious to danger, and determinedly fearless." These are portraits of a time of innocence and exploration, a time of self-discovery, that provide windows into the life of a young woman. Storer's prints likewise embody that youthful time. But, the text and images are companion creations rather than responses to or illustrations of each other.

Storer's print's were inspired by her husband's discovery and purchase of an old journal, circa 1909, at a Rare Book shop near their home in California. It appeared to be a manual of sorts, consisting of questions posed to a group of girls, for instance: What is your favorite color? or Who is your secret love? or How much do you weigh? The answers were all sassy: "I'm a day older than I was yesterday!"and "My secret love is a secret."Storer painted and collaged over the handwriting, but it peeks through and is readable, the questions and answers adding texture and context to both the images and the primary text.

For Dern, the book had its inception in the reflective time post 9/11. She writes: "Everyone was sad and grieving and outraged. It was a terrible time. I thought that the time I spent in France after college would never happen to any one again, that the time had gone when a person could be innocent and not afraid. So I wrote some stories, not using the paintings as inspiration, but just writing. Then when the writing was done I put the prints and the stories together."

Letterpress Janson text from photopolymer plates on Arches paper. Paintings were made into Iris Prints that maintain the luminous and vibrant colors of the originals. Portfolio edition of sixteen layered prints and stories is housed in a cloth-covered box with three-sided tray for easy access to prints. An original, inset painting by Storer adorns the cover. Note: Dern reports that she directed binder John DeMerritt to make the box color "tomato soup."When he astutely asked, "With cream or water?" she replied, "Cream." Edition of 30. (9.25 x 14.25 inches.) A satisfying collaborative bookwork that, composed of Storer's evocative collage creations, Dern's insightful and sensitive texts and the serendipity of found materials, is certainly more than the sum of its parts.
$1800 (Last copy of edition)


Prints by Inez Storer from Petites Histoires, Jungle Garden Press.

Jungle Garden Press Out of Print Titles:
• Salt Water Poem
• Mayhem, Pestilence & Disasters
• Chairs


Page last update: 01.30.06

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