Fore-Edge Paintings

The Secret Works of Art Hidden Inside Book Pages

“This week it’s about tiny paintings that I’ve never seen or honestly even known about. Imagine being able to do this kind of very, very small paintings. Be sure to check out the links to see the paintings revealed.

Jackie-Jacobson- artist

Sometimes the greatest artworks are hidden in plain sight. Case in point: the University of Iowa recently discovered a four-volume set of scientific books from 1837 contains hidden paintings on the edges of the pages, which only show up when you fan them part-way open. These “Fore-Edge Paintings” are everywhere, and they’re beautiful.

As Flavorwire explains, These Paintings go back to the 16th century, “when Italian artist Cesare Vecellio (cousin of Renaissance painter Titian) started using his books as a canvas in order to beautify them.” A bunch of them were posted by the University of Iowa and the Boston Public Library, and check out some of our favorites below.

Jerusalem Delivered: a Heroic Poem, translated from the Italian of Torquato Tasso, by John Hoole, London, 1797 with three paintings: Trojans Arch, Ancona (left), Tasso in Prison (center) and the Bridge Of Sighs, Venice (right)

Jacobson - Fore-Edge Paintings

The Poetical Works of Lord Byron, 1883, The Time Machine

Jacobson - Fore-Edge Paintings

Latin and Italian poems of Milton translated into English verse, 1808 with a painting of the inn at Edmonton

Jacobson - Fore-Edge Paintings

Paradise Lost by John Milton, printed in 1809, with the view of London Bridge

Jacobson - Fore-Edge Paintings

The book titled Analysis of the game of chess with a painting of chess players and a chessboard

Jacobson - Fore-Edge Paintings

MUST SEE.  Watch how the paintings are revealed in this video link …

Scroll down to : Robert Mudie: Autumn, Spring, Winter and Summer, 1837 Click here to see it 

And here’s a link to the Boston Public Library collection

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