Limited Editions Club

We have specialized in selling Limited Editions Club books for over 20 years and have perhaps the world's largest inventory of Limited Editions Club books, from their beginning in 1929 to their much more limited recent offerings. In addition to what is listed here, we have many other LECs not yet cataloged, and we purchase titles constantly, so let us know if you have a specific want. Included in our inventory are many of George and Helen Macy's own copies of the books as well as complete files of original art for several of the titles.

The Limited Editions Club has been making fine books since 1929 producing some of the most beautiful volumes issued in the twentieth century. Special attention was given to the selection and design of each book, from the typography to the binding. The finest designers, such as Bruce Rogers, John Dreyfus, and W. A. Dwiggins, employed their talents to give each title an appropriately unique slant.

Publisher George Macy commissioned some of the top illustrators of the time, including Rackham, Matisse, Picasso, Benton, Gibbings, Kent, Rockwell, etc. to create drawings, wood engravings, and even original lithographs and etchings to grace almost every volume published by the Club.

The greatest printers of the time, including the Officina Bodoni and England's finest printers, helped realize the finished product, often using letterpress printing and hand-made paper. Finally, each binding was selected with an eye to make a statement about the title, employing the finest available leathers, hand-made marbled papers, and imported linens and silks.

Nearly all of the titles were limited to 1500 copies usually signed by the illustrator and sometimes by the designer or printer and even on occasion by the author, such as Upton Sinclair's THE JUNGLE, Robert Frost's COMPLETE POEMS, and some copies of James Joyce's ULYSSES. A small number of the two Alice books by Lewis Carroll were signed by Alice herself!

For about the past 25 years, the Club has published fewer books, mostly editions by contemporary authors and illustrators, often in a larger format and with a smaller limitation, usually ranging from 250 to 1000 copies.

The philosophy behind these appears to be to create books as objects of art rather than books to be held and read. Examples of these are Octavio Paz's THREE POEMS illustrated with 27 lithographs by Robert Motherwell, signed by the author and the illustrator, and THE BOOK OF GENESIS with 8 original silkscreens by Jacob Lawrence. Other recent illustrators include de Kooning, Cartier-Bresson, Balthus, Mapplethorpe, and Elizabeth Catlett, and Jacob Lawrence.

The Club ceased publication in 2012.

View our collection of Limited Editions Club volumes.


Charles Agvent
291 Linden Road
Mertztown, PA  19539
610-682-4750
info@charlesagvent.com

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