Friday, July 8, 2011

Book Arts: Strasbourg, France

Strasbourg, France, besides being the capitol of the European Union, has a wonderful history relating to crafts and craft guilds, which includes a strong connection to Johannes Gutenberg. Gutenberg lived in Strasbourg for a time, and is commemorated in various ways:

Here is a statue of Gutenberg that resides in the Place Gutenberg:

The decorations on the statue were very interesting. They focus on the symbolic value of the printing press -- how it opened up a world of music and literature and ideas:

In the historic centre of Strasbourg, I visited the Palais Rohan, which houses the Decorative Arts Museum, Fine Arts Museum and Archaeological Museum:

There are some finely worked bindings made by local craftspeople there, including this one made by Johannes Beck in 1731:

After stopping off for a bit of refreshment at a wonderfully mad little cafe full of birds (artificial) and fairy lights.....

....I went on to the Strasbourg historical museum, located at 2 rue du Vieux-Marché-aux-Poissons.

They have information about Gutenberg's time in Strasbourg, and about the history of printing in the city. Strasbourg had a number of printing establishments in the early days of the printing press. There are also some beautiful books from the late 1400s on display:

If you know of any other interesting book arts-related places to visit in Strasbourg, do feel free to share them in the comments.


Carol said...

Now I'm wondering if I can make it to Florence, can I extend the trip to Strasbourg. This looks like an amazing place to visit. I appreciate the list of names and addresses. Thanks.

moonandhare said...

You're most welcome, Carol! I found the old part of Strasbourg completely charming, and would love to go back some day.