We recently had the pleasure of adding a new group of unique and beautiful items to our collection of Charles van Sandwyk material. For those of you not familiar with his delightful body of work, Charles is a local artist, illustrator and author whose published books we have been collecting for many years. Each of these books is quite a treat. They are all designed, written and illustrated by Charles, who also oversees every step of their publication.
Charles’ books are difficult to categorize – on first glance they appear to be meant for children, yet there is something about the imaginative world that Charles creates within them that equally, if not even more so, captures the attention of adults.
This latest accrual adds an exciting new layer to our Charles van Sandwyk collection by offering a glimpse behind the scenes of Charles’ work and showing his development as an artist since the age of 18. It contains over 50 items – many one-of-a-kind – including printing proofs for his books, posters for exhibits of his work, original artwork, book prospectuses, broadsides, photographs, and banners he created for the village of Deep Cove, where he resides for much of the year. This collection will be valuable to anyone interested in learning more about Charles’ work, about the Vancouver book publishing and art world, or about independent fine art and letterpress printing.
A full description of the items is available here.
The items were brought together by the Joyce Williams Gallery, with the assistance of Charles, in the hopes of creating a body of work that would illustrate Charles’ progression over the years. It begins with material from his first exhibit in 1984 – including a drawing, a postcard invitation, and photographs of the young Charles – and progresses through 2012, with press proofs from his book I Believe: Two Poems & a Hidden Thought and a delightful hand drawn map of the small Fijian Island of Tavewa, where Charles spends his winters.
We are excited to be preserving this important piece of our local art and publishing history and hope that you will have a chance to come in and enjoy it for yourself!