A very scarce survivor
Talbot, Viva ~ Steel Making : Woodcuts By Viva Talbot
Printed by Hoods Fine Printers, Middlesborough : c1930s (nd)
The sole UK printing by Hoods Fine Printers, Middlesborough in c1930s (nd). The Book is in Near Fine condition. A collection of 15 woodcuts (all signed by Viva Talbot in the plate) depicting various stages of the steel making process. Sewn limp printed card covers. Covers lightly spotted and lightly creased to the yapped edges. The book measures 26 x 39 cm. Internally the 15 striking B/W woodcuts are in fine condition. The woodcuts are titled (and have been signed in the plate) and each one has been printed on thick paper stock (blank to the verso). The 15 woodcuts detail the process of steelmaking from 'Digging Ironstone in Northamptonshire' to 'Rolling A Slab into a Plate'. An extremely scarce production with no copies located on JSIC and only one copy located on Worldcat. It is unclear as to how many copies were printed but it is likely that the print run was very small. Viva Talbot (1900-1983) was a talented artist who specialised in wood engraving. She knew many of the prominent wood engravers of the 1920s and 1930s, including Robert Gibbings, from whom she may have had some tuition. Her father, Benjamin Talbot (1864-1947), was the inventor of the Talbot Tilting Furnace which transformed the open hearth method of producing steel. He was involved in iron companies in Middlesbrough and Stockton and hence Viva, unusually for a woman of that era, had access to the steelworks. In 1941 she married Thomas Nussey and within a few years she became Lady Nussey when Thomas inherited a baronetcy from his father. Viva’s work remained largely undiscovered until 2006 when Dr Joan Heggie of the University of Teesside came across her steel making woodcuts in the British Steel Collection at the Teesside archives. These works and others by the artist became the subject of an exhibition at the Dorman Museum, Middlesbrough in 2010. A remarkable survivor.
CONDITION: Near Fine