Thursday, January 12, 2006

Another cheer for Artscroll

About a month ago, I developed an interest in Medieval Calligraphy and Illumination. The books I've been reading on the subject underscore the amount of effort and artistry that went into the writing of books prior to a way of mass-producing them. Books were truly treasures, works of art, not something you read on the toilet.

As I came upon this, and a little later this, I thought that one of the things that Artscroll does very well in many of their books is the focus on making the books beautiful. The gilded lettering, the embossing, the vibrant and pleasant color combinations, the quality feel of the book. It really adds a certain amount of Kedushah(holiness) to the experience of prayer or study.

3 Comments:

Anonymous Chana said...

I agree! The gilded lettering is so beautiful, so wonderful and welcoming. I enjoy the cover designs as well. I also think Artscroll works are very good for people who want to educate themselves. I really appreciate the works in English- the Chumash in English, the Gemara in English- because otherwise there would be so much I wouldn't/ couldn't understand. They really have opened up a world. It can be improved upon, certainly, but it is good to acknowledge that they have done something well.

January 13, 2006 12:20 PM  
Blogger Mississippi Fred MacDowell said...

I actually think its sort of a mixed bag. Some Artscroll works are aesthetically pleasing, but some not so much. But I think that's really a matter of personal taste.

January 18, 2006 9:02 AM  
Blogger e-kvetcher said...

MFM, I agree that not all their books do this. I was mainly talking about the siddurim/Chumash/T'nach/Talmud series.

January 18, 2006 2:33 PM  

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