The Second Shelf is a literary quarterly and rare books catalogue hybrid, the aim of which is to increase the visibility of women’s writing throughout history. Each issue showcases beautifully photographed, carefully curated books, from first editions to fine bindings, and other rediscovered works by women. Contextualising these works are original commissions by writers, artists, photographers, and illustrators—including essays, poems, interviews, and profiles. As such, it combines the visual quality of a glossy art magazine with the calibre of writing found in exceptional literary journals.
The colours are bold and the patterns are inspired by the old tradition of marbling and feature papers handmade by A. N. Devers and myself. The design is made to really stand out in the otherwise traditional rare book world. It was an extensive and playful process to come up with the look and feel and every detail was thought of (from art direction of photoshoot to flow and emphasis). The magazine has received great feedback and it was nominated for best Art Direction by the ‘Stack Awards 2018’.
“the final product is polished, playfully designed, and downright luxurious, its saturated, marbled paper calling to mind a tome one might find tucked away in the Morgan Library.”