PETER & DONNA THOMAS
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One-of-a-kind & Artists' Books

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There is a lot of discussion going on about what an artists' book is. Like trying to define "What is art?", there is no single right answer. For us the term artists' book simply means a book made by an artist; a book made as a work of art rather than as a literary artifact. In this case we use the term to denote both one-of-a-kind and edition books. Some of these artists books are for sale, some are in exhibits, some have been sold and some we are not ready to sell.

Most of Donna's one-of-a-kind artist's books feature her calligraphy and watercolor paintings and are often full bound in leather with leather onlays in a slipcase with chemise or in a clamshell box.

 

 

 

Why I am Happy. (2016) William Stafford. 9 3/8” by 12 ¼” by 5/8”. Watercolors of Yosemite Lakes and hand-drawn maps illustrate the joyful poem about a special lake. A frontispiece of copper-over-enamel depicts an abstract whorl of water. Clamshell box. $1650.00  

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Water Braids a Rope (2016) Kim Stafford. 9 3/8” by 11 7/8” by 5/8.” Six watercolors painted in the Grand Canyon. Hand-drawn initial letters. Cover: squirrel-skin tanned by Donna, enamel-over-copper abstract landscape frontispiece. Clamshell box $1850.00 

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San Antonio (2016) Naomi Shihab Nye. 2 7/8” by 5 3/8” by 1 3/8.” This is a beautiful love poem written by the celebrated poet from San Antonio. Peter’s bold pulp-painted paper, suggesting the bright colors of the rich cultures of the southwestern USA, is woven together to create the accordioned text pages. Three dominoes are inset into the leather cover, referencing the poem’s contents. $975.00.

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Dust Can’t Kill Me (2015) Woody Guthrie. 6 ½ by 5 3/8 by 5/8 inches. 1925 Ladies Home Journal pages, Dustbowl era photo reproductions from Oklahoma, watercolors and stitching decorate the text, cover and clamshell box. $1150.00

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Another History of the Accordion Book (2017) by Peter Thomas. A book made out of a Scholer accordion. Text is the history of the accordion with hand colored digitally printed photographs 11 inches tall by 6 inches wide by 15 inches long when closed. 22 accordion pages. $1850.

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The Concertina Book. (2014) by Peter Thomas. 7 by 7 by 7 inches. 18 accordion pages. $1650.

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Ficciones (2006) by Jorge Luis Borges.
The universe (which others call the library) is composed of an indefinite, perhaps an infinite, number of hexagonal galleries...One-of-a-kind $800

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The Train Comes to Wichita. by Peter Thomas (2004). 7 by 3 by 2 3/4 inches. Five 15 inch scrolling pages. 20 copies. $245
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A Brief History of the Ukulele. Ukulele Series Book number 23. (2003) 18 by 6 by 3 inches, $1250. Edition of fifteen copies.
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Artist's Book-O-Meter (2003)
A device for testing if an artist book works or not. On permanent display at the San Francisco Center for the Book.
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Three Kinds of Magic (2000) Unique structural book. 6 by 4 by 2.5 inches. $1850.
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Mac’s ABCs (1996) 7.25 by 5.5 inches. A alphabet primer for baby computers. $1900.
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Books that have sold:  

Huckleberry Finn (2003/2016) Mark Twain. 18 inches long x 16 inches wide x 3 inches tall. A one-of-a-kind artists' book inspired Twain's text. $862.

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Spring in the Valley (2016) Mary Hunter Austin. 9 ½ by 12 ¼ by 5/8 inches. This is a lively poem about the coming of spring by the noted Eastern Sierra Nevada author. Four watercolors of Mono Lake, calligraphy and additional painting on pages, clamshell box. $1650.00 

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Hopes are Shy Birds (2015). Audubon, John James. 3 ¾ by 3 5/8 inches. 16 accordion pages of calligraphed text, wings and birds in watercolors on multi-layered handmade paper by Peter Thomas. Enamel bird on cover, clamshell box. $975.00 

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Long Live the Weeds (2014) By Theodore Roethke. 3.5 by 2.5 inches. 18 pages, $850. Sold

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Wilderness (2014) text by Sigurd Olson. 3 1/2 by 3 ¼ inches. $850. Sold

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Lapis Lazuli and Glass Craftsman (2014) by Richard Vallance. 3 1/4 by 5 1/2 inches. sold

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Silver Sierra (2013) by Gary Millar. 6 by 5 3/4 inches. 16 pages. $sold.

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Stockings (2014) by An non. 5 1/4 by 3 5/8 inches. 16 accordion pages. $sold.

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Story (2013) Terry Tempest Williams. 5 by 6 inches. 10 accordion pages. $sold.

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Sierra Point (2011) Thomas, Donna. 5 by 4 ¼ inches. 10 accordion pages. 4 panel watercolor illustration. Sold

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In The Middle. Compiled and edited by Peter and Donna Thomas (2004) 11 1/4 by 8 1/8 inches. 14 pages and 12 scrolls. 24 copies. Sold out.
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Escape (2001) By Donna Thomas. 5 5/16 x 5 1/4 inches. An accordion book with watercolor paintings of nudes and small landscape painting .Clamshell box.$3000. Sold.
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Yellowstone (2011) Donna Thomas 6 ¼ x 9 3/8”. Medieval wooden board binding, 7 full page illustrations plus more. $2975. Sold Click here for more images and information.
 

Columbine (2011) Mary Austin. 5 ¾ by 7 ¼ inches. 10 accordion pages. 6 watercolor illustrations.

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Hetch Hetchy Valley – a grand landscape garden (2011) John Muir. 4 ½ by 5 3/8. 5 illustrations.

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Ditty of First Desire (2007) A poem by Federico Garcia Lorca. 5.5 x 5 .5 inches. A unique "cootie-catcher" shaped book made using paste papers with paintings of nudes. Clamshell box. Sold.
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Plutarchs History for Young Men (2003) 8 by 6 by 1.5 inches, 1 scrolling page, Unique book. SOLD
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California Dreaming (2003) 3 by 6 by 3 inches, 1 scrolling pages, 1 title panel. Unique book.SOLD
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Salt is Good by Peter Thomas (2004) 3 1/8 by 1 inch, one 11 inch scrolling page. Hand lettered and altered photocopy text by Peter Thomas. Unique book. Sold
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The History and Dangers of Flight (2003) 20 by 20 by 5 inches, 3 scrolling pages, unique book. $2400
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© 2002 Peter and Donna Thomas