Xtra small. Miniature books in Museum Meermanno
From 3 October 2017 through 7 January 2018
Museum Meermanno will show more than five hundred miniature books in the small, but impressive exhibition ‘Xtra small’.
Miniature books fit in the palm of your hand and sometimes even on the tip of your finger. The small format is a challenge for book binders and printers. It is also an opportunity for them to display their expertise and dexterity. A really successful miniature book demands a high level of craftsmanship as well as a considerable degree of creativity, taste and refinement in the design and in the motifs and materials used.
The miniature books in Meermanno
Museum Meermanno has always had a large collection of these tiny books, including the extraordinary Bloemhofje of 1673. Many modern examples are also part of the collection. This was expanded dramatically in 2012 with the Bibliotheca Thurkowiana Minor. This is a miniature library that contains 1550 little books including a miniature version of a clay tablet from 1800 BC.
Exhibition ‘Xtra small’
The museum will display this collection in the exhibition ‘Xtra small’ along with 120 additional unique examples. These were submitted for the International Miniature Bookbinding Competition 2017 organized by the Hand Bookbinding Foundation together with publisher De Buitenkant and Museum Meermanno at the end of 2016. The participants received the quires for the story ‘The Island’ by Geert Mak, translated into English by Liz Waters. The Amsterdam artist Max Kisman provided illustrations for the text. The books had to conform to the so-called Bondy norm which meant the maximum height, width and thickness could be no more than 76.2mm.
All of the submissions reflect the dedication and craftsmanship of their makers and come from all parts of Europe, Canada, the United States, China, Japan, Australia and New Zealand.
Guided tours, a look at the little library and workshops
The museum is organizing a series of activities. Each Wednesday afternoon in October, the curator will open the miniature Thurkow library and show visitors special and secret hidden books. During The Hague Museum Night you can take part in a mini guided tour by book binder Karin Cox. Look at our website for additional activities.
International Miniature Bookbinding Competition
On Sunday 1 October at 14:00 the prizes for the International Miniature Bookbinding Competition 2017 will be awarded at Museum Meermanno. The winner from the United States will be there for the occasion. The catalogue of the exhibition designed by Peter Verheul will also be presented. The book, published by De Buitenkant (Uitgeverij De Buitenkant), includes full-scale illustrations of all of the entries in the competition. Prize: 12,50 euros.
Museum Meermanno | Huis van het boek
2514 AP Den Haag
open: Tuesday to Sunday 11.00-17.00 hrs