Jewels in Her Crown: Treasures of Columbia University Libraries Special Collections

Exhibition Themes > Printing History & Book Arts > 13. Vincent Fitz Gerald & Co.

13.  Vincent Fitz Gerald & Company.  Maquette for The Reed, by Jalaluddin Mohammad Rumi, translated by Zahra Partovi. Watercolor, ink and pencil on cut paper, by Susan Weil, 1989. RBML, Vincent Fitz Gerald & Company Archives

The fine press company created by Vincent Fitz Gerald, a Columbia alumnus, is the embodiment of that nexus of creativity that makes New York City such a vital place. Through the generosity of Sylvia and Joseph Radov, the Rare Books and Manuscript Library now owns a nearly complete run of the publications of Vincent Fitz Gerald & Company, and also holds a significant portion of its archives.

As Village Voice theater critic, translator, and Columbia alumnus, Michael Feingold, a member of the company, has written: "In our degraded age of uncaring mass manufacture ... one artist was able to find so many kindred souls to share his love for works that are beautiful, meaningful, individual and scrupulously made." Fitz Gerald has brought together the work of such authors as Jalaluddin Mohammad Rumi, James Joyce, Franz Kafka, Edith Sitwell, Lee Breuer, and David Mamet with artists such as Susan Weil, Judith Turner, Edward Koren (also a Columbia alumnus), Neil Welliver, Dorothea Rockburn, and James Nares. Texts have been newly translated by Zahra Partovi, yet another graduate of Columbia, and Michael Feingold. Other members of the company include artisans such as book designer and calligrapher Jerry Kelly, paper artist Paul Wong of Dieu donné Papermill, and printer Daniel Keleher of Wild Carrot Press, in addition to Partovi, who is also a book binder.

Purchased with funds provided by Sylvia and Joseph Radov, 2003

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