Joseph Blumenthal and Ben Shahn

Ecclesiastes, or the Preacher.
New York: Spiral Press, 1965.

Designed by Joseph Blumenthal – Drawings by Ben Shahn – Engravings by Stefan Martin –Calligraphy by David Soshensky

The Spiral Press operated in New York from 1926 to 1971. It was founded and run by Joseph Blumenthal and George Hoffman. Blumenthal, a noted typographer who became known for printing the work of Robert Frost for thirty years, was responsible for the book design of Ecclesiastes. He employed the Emerson typeface, which he had created for the press. Originally called Spiral, the type was renamed Emerson after its use in a special edition of Ralph Waldo Emerson’s Nature. Illustrations were printed from original wood blocks engraved by Stefan Martin after drawings by the artist Ben Shahn (1898–1969). A full-page added title was calligraphed on vellum by David Soshensky. Printed in an edition of two hundred eighty-five, the copy on display is numbered 25 and signed by the artist, engraver, calligrapher, and printer. This copy is from the collection of Rabbi Levi A. Olan at Bridwell Library.

© 2019 Estate of Ben Shahn/Licensed by VAGA at Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY

The Old Testament - Ecclesiastes
Joseph Blumenthal and Ben Shahn