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Printing Arts in Texas

Printing Arts in Texas

More than merely a collector of printing arts, Al Lowman is a critic and scholar of the genre as well.  Lowman wrote the book on fine printing in Texas—literally. Published in 1975, Lowman’s Printing Arts in Texas offers its readers a history of fine printing in Texas from Edwin B. Hill to William R. Holman and family, with stops along the way to discuss significant designers and presses such as Carl Hertzog, the Book Club of Texas, and William D. Wittliff.  Not only a description of fine printing, Lowman’s book, the result of a wonderful collaboration between Lowman and William R. Holman, is itself a shining example of the capabilities of Texas printers.  In a letter to Lowman, Hertzog remarked, “It is ironic (or paradoxical) that the book in which you review my work generously is a better job than anything I ever produced!”

In addition to tracing the history of fine printing in Texas laid out by Lowman, the exhibit that follows also draws heavily on the actual language Lowman used in Printing Arts in Texas and displays the very texts he so elegantly described.  We see this exhibit, then, not just as a static display of books but as an embodiment of the possibilities for research afforded by the Lowman collection.  Ultimately, “Fruits of a Gentle Madness” illustrates the superb quality of both Lowman the collector and the Lowman collection.


(Click the right arrow to continue on to Edwin B. Hill or select 'Exhibit Home' to select a new exhibit case.)

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