Nice CanLit Dust Jacket Design: Part 1

Around 2005, I began to pursue an interest in visual design via olde Canadian Literature. My first book bought for its jacket was a rare U.K. edition of Hugh MacLennan’s Barometer Rising. I’d always like covers (via LP records, Classics Illustrated comics when I was younger) and, of course, I have a long-term adult interest in the visual arts more broadly including painting, sculpture, and architecture.

Below and in the next entry, I have selected some notable examples of dust jacket design and art that has stood out for me in my experience with CanLit to share with you. Both batches are organized by authors’ last names, publishing dates, designer names, and any other interesting info. Enjoy!

(mostly Canadian eds. with occasional UK and American editions noted.)

A-K Alphabetical Author Surnames

(one of the nicest wrap-around djs; 1969, McClelland & Stewart; done by Atwood’s artist-friend Charles Pachter)

(an American ed. dj; 1959 Knopf; dj by Herbert Beyer; Dawson City-born author)

(Maritime author; 1946, Ryerson; dj by De Garthe)

(Birney’s Governor-General winning book with his most famous poem; 1942, Ryerson, 2nd. ed. with illustration of ‘The Finger’ by Thoreau MacDonald, son of Group of 7 painter J.E.H. MacDonald)

(appropriate humorous illustration for a war satire; 1949, Ryerson; dj by John McNally)

(psychological Governor-General’s Award-winning Quebec novel; 1960, Jonathan Cape–UK ed.)

(Nova Scotia author; 1963, McClelland & Stewart; intriguing dj by Frank Newfeld)

(‘history’ of U of T; 1948, MacMillan; dj by Eric Aldwinckle)

(It’s always interesting to see alternate djs; the Governor-General Award winner by Toronto’s Callaghan about an unconventional white girl who hangs out with black Montreal jazz musicians; left: 1951, Macmillan;–1st printing–dj by Leo Manso; right: a 1961 reprinting, Macmillan; dj by Aleksander Werner.)

(1937, Random House, US; dj.–Lieberman)

(1939, Scribner’s, US; dj by Margaret Freeman)

(Art Deco style dj; 1934, Scribner’s)

(somewhat erotic dj, 1978, McClelland & Stewart; symbolic representation of the coniunctio spirituum, or the spiritual union of the male and female principle, from the alchemical text Rosararium Philosophorum (1550), reprinted in Artis Auriferae (1593), Bibliotheca chemica curiosa (1702) and most recently, Psychology and Alchemy by C.G. Jung (1953)

(1963, Secker & Warburg, UK; dj by Barry Trengove)

(2006, Harper Collins; dj by Montreal’s Leonard Cohen and Michael Petit)

(early Winnipeg author; 1931, McClelland & Stewart)

(satirical mystery; 1955, Scribner’s, US; dj by Helen Borten)

(1951, Clarke, Irwin; dj by Grant MacDonald)

(an oft-used motif: the window looking into the locale–here, Montreal, the author’s home town; Governor-General Award winner; 1944, Lippincott, US; dj by Hallock)

(rare dj; Graham won the GG twice; 1938, Scribner’s, US)

(1939, Ryerson; MB prairie author)

(very rare 1933, Dent dj)

(1929, Macmillan; dj by Drake Brookshaw)

(fictional biography of Keats; rare dj, 1934, Ryerson; dj by Abbey; promising ON author who died accidentally by drowning)

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