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Lost on the Titanic : The Story of the Great Omar Binding Dominic Riley Thursday 30 May 2019

The Great Omar was the most fabulous, elaborate and opulent binding ever created.
It was embellished with over one thousand jewels, five thousand leather onlays and a hundred square feet of gold leaf, and took a team of craftsmen over two and a half years to make. It went down with the Titanic. This lecture tells the story of the making of the fabulous Great Omar. It is also the story of the renowned bookbinding firm of Sangorski and Sutcliffe - who were known for their elaborate jewelled bindings - and the men that made this extraordinary book. It also tells the moving story of life after the tragedy, and of one young man in particular, who decided against the odds to recreate the binding, a venture which itself is mired in tragedy and which occupied him for the rest of his life.

Lecturer Dominic Riley is an internationally renowned bookbinder, artist, lecturer and teacher. He first learned bookbinding at 16 from Benedictine Monks at Douai Abbey in Berkshire and later at the London College of Printing. He has worked at the Victoria and Albert Museum, and for various binderies in London, New York and San Francisco, and spends part of the year teaching masterclasses across the USA. He has his bindery in the Lake District, from where he travels across the UK teaching and lecturing. Dominic’s binding work is mostly the restoration of antiquarian books and the creation of artistic bindings to commission. He has won many prizes in the Designer Bookbinders competition, including both first prizes and the Mansfield Silver Medal in 2007. He was elected a Fellow of Designer Bookbinders in 2008. His bindings are in collections worldwide, including the British Library, the John Rylands Library in Manchester, the National Library in Wales, the Grolier Club in New York, the SF public library, and the Bodleian Library in Oxford. In 2013 he won first prize in the prestigious Sir Paul Getty International Bookbinding Competition and has spent the last two years travelling around the world with the exhibition. He considers the binding of the Kelmscott Chaucer to be the most important moment of his career to date.

Image :The Omar Binding