The weekend before last Phil had the good fortune to visit the Tipoteca Italiana in Cornuda, northern Italy. This remarkable museum, founded by Silvio Antiga, is built around a large collection of historic Italian printing material. For the last fifteen years or so Silvio and his colleagues have been traveling round the country, talking to printers, photographing them and collecting type and machinery. This is restored magnificently in their own workshop, and some of it is on display. The building itself is a former rope works that has been restored and adapted with wonderful taste and sensitivity.
One of the things that shines through is a high a regard for the printers themselves, as well as for the tools of their trade. The place is a must for anyone interested in printing and its past. It has the added attraction of its location in the Veneto, close to both Venice and the equally spectacular plain and Dolomite mountains.
For those who can’t get there the museum have published A Story of Character, a book of their first ten years. Written by Sandro Berra, their genial director, it has over three hundred beautiful photographs superbly printed on uncoated paper by Silvio’s other enterprise, Graffiche Antiga.
You can see more of Phil’s photographs here.