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Bookbinder of the Month: Haein Song

February 16, 2014 by Erin Fletcher

TheTrial1-HaeinSong

The striking design on this fine binding of The Trial by Franz Kafka was created by the talented Haein Song in 2011. This Folio Society edition is covered in full black goatskin with reverse pared natural goatskin onlays. Keeping in fashion with her other bindings, the endpapers are hand printed and sit opposite a leather joint. 

TheTrial2-HaeinSong

The head edge and tail edge of the text block are decorated with black acrylic, leaving the whiteness of the paper on the fore edge exposed. Breaking up the edge decoration like this can be very interesting for the overall concept of the design and I think Haein is really playful in this area of the book. 

TheTrial4-HaeinSong TheTrial3-HaeinSong

You’ve created design bindings for some prominent authors such as Camus, Kafka and Kipling. Do you have an affinity for these authors? Do you plan to bind more of their works?
I’m an admirer of few authors, which include Beckett, Camus, Kafka, Borges, Pessoa, Calvino, Kundera, Perec, Hesse and Carroll. I’m also very fond of playwriters associated with The Theatre of the Absurd. Whenever I have an urge and space I look for some of those authors’ books and I have few waiting to be bound. How I came to bookbinding is from the love of reading and interest in language. I don’t think it was easy for me to acquire a second language after being a grown-up so my love is mixed with the frustration I had to go through. And some of the authors I mentioned above express what I want to say through their books eloquently, articulately and poetically.


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    My name is Erin Fletcher, owner and bookbinder of Herringbone Bindery in Boston. Flash of the Hand is a space where I share my process and inspirations.
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