The Plain Wrapper Press, 1966–1988

Gabriel Rummonds established his Plain Wrapper Press in 1966, initially to publish his own writings, but inspired by the example of Armando Braun Menéndez and Giovanni Mardersteig began to publish contemporary texts illustrated with original prints by contemporary artists. With the 1976 publication of Seven Saxon Poems by Jorge Luis Borges the PWP became one of the most recognized fine presses of its time. Alessandro Zanella joined the press in 1977 and their collaboration continued until 1982 when Rummonds closed the press to become the director of the Book Arts program at the University of Alabama.

Zanella continued to print under his Edizioni Ampersand imprint until his death in 2012. Rummonds established a new imprint, Ex Ophidia,

in Cottondale, Alabama, with its last publication in 1988.  In 1993

W. Thomas Taylor published an illustrated bibliography of the PWP, from which the following images were taken.  

Gabriel Rummmonds (left) and Alessandro Zanella, 1980.

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Seven Saxon Poems, by Jorge Luis Borges, with cover sculptures by Arnaldo Pomodoro

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Top right: Dal Vero, by John Hollander. Top left and bottom: Could I Ask You Something?, by Lewis Thomas; box, binding, and page spread

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Gabriel Rummmonds (left) and Alessandro Zanella, 1980.

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