October, 2023

Empire State Book Fair – Booth 21

100 items in 10 categories

inquiries: sanctuaryrarebooks@gmail.com phone: 917-855-6603

April 2022

Botany & Gardening

Coinciding with the 2022 New York Antiquarian Book fair, we are pleased to offer a wide range of books and manuscripts on botany and gardening. Many of these items will be at our booth (D7). They run from the 16th to the 21st century, ranging from high-spots in the field to artists’ books that stretch the imagination.

September 2021


60 items, mostly dedicated to fortification and military engineering, with additional books and manuscripts related to warfare. Early fortification books contain striking illustrations detailing the geometric power and design of military architecture. The items offered here span from the 16th to the 20th century.

July 2021

Latin America

Gathered here in our latest catalogue are 79 items relating to Latin America. There is a diverse blend of subject matter, from literature to art to natural history. Among the other highlights are women’s travel journals and sketchbooks, a friendship album from Buenos Aires, and uncommon periodicals from Cuba and Mexico. We hope you find something of interest in this colorful mix reflective of the vibrancy and diversity of the region.

March 2021


This catalogue celebrates the great city of Venice. Featuring early Venetian printing; historical and literary works; travel books; art, architecture, decorative arts and photography. From incunabula to modern press books. The vast majority of the earlier material was part of a single private collection.

August 2020

Everyday Enchantments: A Collection of Artist Nell Blaine

We are pleased to offer an important archive of the New York artist Nell Blaine and her circle. As Jed Perl notes in his introduction: “The material gathered here sheds new light on Blaine’s art and life, and in doing so deepens our understanding of the forces that shaped art in mid-twentieth-century America. The beautifully organized scrapbooks, notebooks, and sketchbooks that Blaine kept document everything from the writings and drawings she produced as a child in Virginia through the career she pursued as a graphic designer in her early years in New York and her ever growing success as a painter in the 1940s, ‘50s, and ‘60s. We see Blaine as a girl on the art staff of her high school paper. And we see her mature draftsmanship in a small notebook, probably from around 1950, with details of figures and interiors rendered in dramatic calligraphic strokes. There are also some unusual books and periodicals. These are the fascinating souvenirs of an extraordinary woman and an extraordinary life.”

August 2020


An eclectic selection centered around French, American and Mexican Surrealism circles with: journals and magazines, exhibition catalogs, artist-signed and decorated postcards, original drawings and vintage photographs. Highlights include works related to or by: André Breton, Joseph Cornell, Paul Strand, Ad Reinhardt, Wolfgang Paalen, Marcel Duchamp, Fernand Leger, Max Ernst, Jacques Prévert, René Crevel, Francis Picabia, Man Ray, Paul Éluard, Joan Miró and more. Of special note is a unique selection of material related to the Swiss-American, second-generation Surrealist painter Kurt Seligmann (1900–1962) and items from the library of Enrico Donati (1909–2008), an Italian-born American painter and sculptor, known for his works in Surrealism, Constructivism, and Abstract Expressionism. A high point of this selection is the sought-after, landmark exhibition catalog: Exposición Internacional del Surrealismo (The International Exhibition of Surrealism), organized by André Breton in 1940 at Galleria de arte Mexicano in Mexico City.

May 2020

Jean Cocteau

Jean Cocteau was a 20th century renaissance man who left behind an astonishingly large body of work. He was a poet and novelist, playwright and filmmaker, visual artist and designer. He wrote essays and criticism, was a prolific letter writer, and loved to mingle in elite literary and artistic circles. Edith Wharton described him as a man “to whom every great line of poetry was a sunrise, every sunset the foundation of the Heavenly City.” The quality of his work, especially the literary work, is very uneven, and if one could eliminate much of what is weaker, his legacy might well be more intact. His films Beauty and the Beast and Orpheus blended avant-garde and fantasy, proving influential for decades to come. We are pleased to present here a significant collection of Cocteau, almost all of it printed, the exception being two letters to his close friend Marlene Dietrich. There are inscribed books, many first editions in English and French, numerous limited editions (including obscure works), and collaborations with famous friends (Picasso) and lovers (Raymond Radiguet and Jean Desbordes). A presentation copy of his seminal book on Opium, containing an original drawing, is a highlight.

May 2020

Henry Miller

This collection of Henry Miller includes correspondence, association copies, and books from Miller’s personal library.

January 2020

French Books & Manuscripts

Once again this year, The ALLIANCE FRANÇAISE / French Institute of NYC will be hosting the ABAA Booksellers’ showcase held in conjunction with Bibliography Week. Gathered here is a selection of over 100 French books and manuscripts from 500 years of book making. Highlights from this catalogue will be on display at the fair. Hope to see you at the showcase!

August 2019

Robert Louis Stevenson

Author of some of the most widely read 19th century works of literature, Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894) wrote prolifically in spite of being plagued by poor health for most of his life. We present here material largely gathered from two private collections. Included are two books from Stevenson’s personal library, an inscribed association copy of an early work, further autograph material, first editions of A Child’s Garden of Verses and Strange Case of Doctor Jekyll and Mister Hyde, a plentiful selection of first editions and illustrated editions of many works, and numerous studies about Stevenson, as well.

March 2019

New York Antiquarian Book Fair 2019 Highlights

The New York International Antiquarian Book Fair is here again! Please join us at Booth D2, beginning Thursday, March 7, from 5-9pm. The show at the Park Avenue Armory @ 67th Street runs through Sunday March 10. Don’t miss out on this wonderful annual event and the greatest book fair in the world! Attached is our fair list – 100 items (none of which were in last year’s list of 100).

February 2019


As we approach the New York Book Fair, we are pleased to issue our first catalogue centered on material by and about Women. Items were selected over a wide range of prices and time periods, and we hope you enjoy. Our New York Fair List will be posted next week.

January 2019

Printed Americana

This selection of printed Americana contains 62 items. Highlights include a sammelband of 1864 Presidential Campaign documents, the extremely rare first New Hampshire printing of the United States Constitution, Thomas Paine’s Large Additions to Common Sense (Philadelphia 1776), several pre-revolution imprints, a rare Mexican imprint related to art and geometry, Colonial Currency, charming children’s primers, and much more!

January 2019

Manuscript Americana

This catalogue of manuscript Americana contains 52 items, over a wide expanse of subjects. Among the many highlights include an autograph manuscript copy of “Hail, Columbia,” an amazing magician’s notebook, an early American songbook, as well as a number of fine calligraphic albums and an unbelievably wacky diary. To be followed by a selection of printed Americana, coming soon!

July 2018


It’s a summer blockbuster! Gathered here is movie related material from stock, highlighted by the first 75 issues of the seminal avant-garde magazine, Film Culture. Books from the libraries of Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. and Lauren Bacall are also featured. Additional sections include novels that made their way into the movie theater (many of these are inscribed), scholarly books, periodicals and more.

June 2018


We are pleased to present a selection of 20 emblem books from stock. Long collected and enjoyed for their visual charm, the illustrations in these volumes display an amazing variety of allegorical representation. The books are arranged in no particular order – much like the experience of leafing through a good emblem book, you never know what you’re going to see next. Printing dates range from 1551 to 1816, with French, English, German, Italian, and Dutch examples.

May 2018

20th Century Poetry

A range of forty items, spanning decades, price points and names including James Agee, Paul Auster, Josef Albers, Jorge Luis Borges, Paul Bowles, Blaise Cendrars, Gregory Corso, E. E. Cummings, William Faulkner, T.S. Eliot, Langston Hughes, James Joyce, Ezra Pound, Rainer Maria Rilke, Patti Smith, John Updike, Paul Valery, Tennessee Williams and more – many of which are signed and inscribed.

March 2018

New York Antiquarian Book Fair 2018 Highlights

100 items selected from 10 subject areas: 20th Century Art, Architecture and Design; Photography; Modern Literature; Russian; Early Printed Books; Fête Books; Manuscript Books and Albums; Travel and Exploration; Philosophy and French Illustrated Books. Please stop by our booth at the New York Antiquarian Book Fair.

January 2018

Russian Rarities in Art, Architecture, Design & Literature

A bonus catalogue featuring 34 important works of the Russian Avant-garde and Constructivism. Major art, design and literary figures of the early twentieth-century are present such as Vladimir Mayakovsky, Alexander Rodchenko, Valentina Kulagina, Gustav Klutsis, El Lissitzky, Ilya Selvinsky and Boris Pasternak. Highlights include A Game in Hell: A Poem (Igra v adu: Poema), one of the rarest works of the Russian Avant-garde, first issued in 1912, the first collaboration between Aleksei Kruchenykh and Velimir Khlebnikov.

January 2018

Avant-garde and Contemporary Art Books & Ephemera

This catalogue of Avant-garde and Contemporary Art Books & Ephemera includes more than 40 items, arranged in random order, and spanning important movements: Bauhaus, Czech avant-garde, Jugendstil, Surrealism, Dada, Futurism, Fluxus and the New York School. Highlights include works by Joan Miró, Kurt Schwitters, Jim Dine, Bruno Munari, Robert Rauschenberg, Robert Motherwell, Josef Albers, Georges Hugnet and more.

February 2017

Gregory Corso

We are pleased to offer a private collection of Gregory Corso material. Corso was born in New York City (as Nunzio Corso) on March 26, 1930. He lived out a horribly difficult childhood, marked by abandonment, abuse, and homelessness, spent some years as a juvenile in prison for theft, before emerging as the youngest (and least celebrated) of the core four members of the Beat Generation – along with Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, and William S. Burroughs. He died in Minnesota on January 17, 2001.

October 2016


Almost all of the items in this catalogue come from a single private collection. Represented here is roughly 10% of that collection. If you would like to receive a link to the entirety of our Russian books in stock, please let us know. While one often hopes to find these books in fine condition, the reality is, many of them were not built to last, and surviving copies are often scarce in any condition. Thanks for having a look, and we hope you find something of interest.

October 2016


Too much candy, not enough books!  Well, you won’t hear kids saying that most likely, and I’ve never heard of anyone giving out books in lieu of candy on the annual trick or treat evening. But in the spirit of the holiday, we’ve gathered together an assortment of titles from stock appropriate to the themes of Halloween, and tried to price them reasonably. Included are a number of scarce books from the uncanny world of 19th century American spiritualism. The books on this list are not in any specific order; think of it as a lantern full of candy where you need to sift through and hunt for your favorite pieces. Special treat for the first to purchase an item from this catalogue.

April 2016

New York

In celebration of the New York Antiquarian Book Fair, we created a catalogue of 68 items devoted to The Five Boroughs, Our Town, The Big Apple.  A range of material, spanning decades and price points — including rare books, one-of-a-kind manuscripts and albums, manuscript and printed maps, photography, architecture, theater and film, drink, literature, and more.

If you’re at the New York Antiquarian Book Fair, April 7-10, please come say hello to us in booth #D5.  For hours, location, and other information, click here.  There are also some shadow fairs nearby that you may want to investigate.

March 2016


More than 100 books and manuscripts on architecture, including more than 50 items offered at reduced prices.  Spanning decades, highlights include strikingly designed issues of “Wendingen,” edited by Dutch architect Hendricus Wijdeveld; numerous works by Serlio, Vignola, Vitruvius; and original drawings by Frank Lloyd Wright.

March 2016


This catalogue of original drawings and instructive books on art includes more than 30 items, arranged in random order, and spanning decades.  Highlights includes some lovely ladies drawn by Pierre-Louis Henri Grevedon, costume and fashion illustration from ancient times to the 20th century,  landscapes, cartoons, Japanese design, anatomical drawings, original pencil drawings by Phiz, and a weirdo (or two).

Download a copy here.

January 2016


Incunabula is defined by John Carter and Nicholas Barker (“ABC for Book Collectors”) as the Latin description of early books as printed in cunabulis (in the swaddling clothes) of the new-born art of printing, or, books printed before 1501.  Elegant, no?  Highlights include the first complete Theocritus, the first collected edition of the sermons of St. Augustine, Lyonese incunables with similar Sisteron provenance (and in very curious bindings), collections of inuncable leaves, and more.

December 2015

Words, Words, Words

Just in time for the holidays, we’re pleased to present a catalogue for wordsmiths — or the wordsmith in your life, who needs an awesome present — featuring rare books and manuscripts on language.  Includes dictionaries, primers, glossaries, lexicons, picture-book alphabets, and Shakespeare.  Forty-seven items, illustrated, spanning decades and price points.  Download it here.  Happy Holidays.

October 2015

Natural History

A selection of rare books and manuscripts on natural history, including unique specimen scrapbooks (seaweed, flowers, leaves, grass), original artwork, drugs, flying squirrels, fish, birds, bugs, horses, monkeys, and much more.  Fifty-five items, in random order.

Oh, there’s also an 18th-century engraving of poo.  For those of you who liked that on our instagram feed.

Download all of it here.

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