Marking time in September 2005
A postcard from Germany
Jaroslav Poncar, wonderful panoramic photographer of Ladakh and other places, has sent me a pdf postcard. It announces the launch of his new book Himalayas: where gods and man meet. He calls it a supercoffeetablebook. At 34 x 48 cm it would fit on our coffee table, but it’s too big for the book shelves. I want one!
Father’s day ponderings
My treat this morning: breakfast, then reading in bed — Henry Petroski’s The book on the bookshelf. He has a chapter about the development of private studies and how books were stored in them. His mention of pictures of Saint Jerome in his study sent me off to the big book of Albrecht Dürer.
Jerome (AD331-420), patron saint of librarians, was a frequent subject for Dürer. I’ve chosen an early woodcut from the year 1492 for dissection below. It does not have the brilliant perspective of his 1514 copper engraving, nor the wonderful human detail of his 1521 panel painting, but it has something else: a bed.
Jerome, who translated the bible into ordinary Latin, appears in the woodcut sitting at work in his study, which is smartly equipped in the style of the 1490s. As someone who spends much of his working time in a study, I am struck by similarities with my own setup.