The Cyber Journal of Heraldic Bookplates

Edited by J. V. de Braganza (Portugal) & J. Stewart LeForte (Canada)

What's New '06 Ex Libris Overview Royal Bookplates Artists' Index Index by Country News '06 Bookplates Submitted Heraldry Links Bookplate Societies Index of Ex Libris Contact

Ex Libris at the WWW

The Oldest Bookplates
Bookplate Collectors & Societies
The birth of FISAE
Ex Libris at the WWW
Recent and future trends

T

aking advantage of the Internet as a powerful means of planetary communication appears to be of paramount importance, in order to promote ex libris, artists, Bookplate Societies’ activities, publishing lists of ex libris for exchange, announcing Competitions and Exhibitions, Bibliography and other relevant news on the subject, making it almost instantly known to a tremendous vast worldwide audience

But astonishingly enough, this has not been yet generally understood, since Ex Libris related sites are still scarce at the WWW [i].

In particular, Ex Libris Societies tend to be slow in apprehending the major importance of the Web as a valuable instrument to promote their activities beyond its narrow national boundaries, as it can be inferred from these numbers:

- In 1999, there were only 5 Bookplate Societies’ websites [ii], although this number has seen lately an amazing increase up to 16 – that is, more than tripled!

On the other hand, many websites related with bookplates seem to have a momentary life, concerned mainly with seasonal events like Bookplate Exhibitions. Also very few artists have yet taken advantage of the Net to publicize their work [iii].

Notwithstanding, there are some relevant exceptions of good conception, great layout, graphic quality and excellent contents. To name but a few, we would mention the following, as our Favorite websites:

The Dutch Ex Libris Web Site of Edwin Smits:

Ex Libris Owls - Josep Manzano (From Ex Libris to Ex Webis)

Erik Skovenborg's - a Danish Collector HP

Alberto Zanverdiani (1894-1977)

ARTIFEX - di Giancarlo Nicoli

Ivan Miladinovic Graphics & Exlibris

Brigitte & Peter Rath Jazz und Ex Libris

Lembit Lõhmus - Graphic Artist

Hasip Pektas

Ex Libris di Antonio Vitale

Edgardo Travaglini

We do hope that, in the near future, the presence of Ex Libris at the WWW will grow steadily encouraged by a wider conscience of its importance.


Revised July '06

For other recent noteworthy websites on bookplates, please check Ex Libris Links 2006

Deserving a special note is the appearance of websites related with the growing Ex Libris movement in China where a FISAE Congress will be held in the near future (see, vg. http://www.zhanglijiang.com/, which although in Chinese is still an inetresting insight of Chinese ex libris creations.

A couple of Japanese sites also marked their presence in the Internet one of them with an insight of the ex libris and engraving traditions in Japan and another with an exhibition of fine bookplates by renowned European artits - past and present.

FISAE made its appearance with an unofficial website under the impulse of the well-known Swiss collector and enthusiast M. Benoit Junod. Informative and with a nice layout it provides useful information for the beginner and bookplate lovers in general. The News section is also useful and regularly updated.

Bookplate Mailing Lists and Forums have been quite lately - interest seeming to be dismaying and contributions lacking.

But, on the other hand an American bookplate collector Mr. Lewis Jaffe has started an interesting Blog- Confessions of a Bookplate Junkie -  - which is worthwhile visiting.

The English Bookplate Society website is still one of my favorites amongst the ex libris societies' sites, providing useful links and information, regularly and duly updated.

The Swiss Bookplate Society finally arrived to the Web, but unfortunately only in German. We hope that they will soon have it translated, at least, in the two remaining official languages of the Confederancy - French and Italian.

E-Bay is a useful place to enlarge one's collection. There is a wide variety of bookplates for sale in auctions, although the prices rise sometimes off reasonable limits. The main interest from buyers seem to be functional ex libris and the dominant theme is erotism.  Armorial bookplates however do appear regularly and it is wothwhile having a look.

Pace et Bonum

José Vicente de Bragança

 



[i] Another point that could be discussed is the quality of those sites, as far as contents, layout, graphics, navigation, information provided and the use of the Web Universal language - English. And here again, there isn’t any uniformity and some sites can be very poorly rated. The best sites are undoubtedly the one from Exlibriswereld (The Netherlands) and the most recent from the Bookplate Society of Andalusia (Spain). Our congratulations are due to those Societies’ Committees and to the Sites’ Webmasters.

[ii] See, our article, Ex Libris/Bookplates at the WWW, originally published in the A.S.B.C.D.’s Bulletin «Bookplate in the News», 1998 (updated in June 1999).

[iii] Nevertheless, we have established a page at our Website – The Art of the Ex Libris (co-edited with Mr. Stewart LeForte, from Cape Breton, Canada  with Links to Bookplate Related Sites, including artists, antique booksellers, the Graphic Arts in general, bookplate collections at Public & University Libraries.


© 1998-2006, José Vicente de Bragança (Portugal) & J. Stewart LeForte (Canada), editors Updated: 11-09-2006