Fore-edge painting is a type of book decoration that is created by painting the edges of the pages of a book. This type of painting is also known as fore-edge gilding. The fore-edge painting is usually done on the top and bottom edges of the pages, but can also be done on the fore-edge, which is the edge of the book that is closest to the spine.
Fore-edge painting has a long history, and there are examples of this type of painting that date back to the 10th century. However, it was not until the 13th century that fore-edge painting became popular. The first recorded instance of fore-edge painting was done by a monk named William of Tewkesbury. He created a painting of a dragon on the fore-edge of a book of psalms.
Fore-edge painting fell out of popularity in the 16th century, but experienced a resurgence in the 19th century. This was due, in part, to the development of new techniques for gilding and painting book edges. One of the most popular fore-edge painters of the 19th century was John T. Ince, who was based in London.
Fore-edge painting is a relatively simple process. First, the pages of the book are fanned so that the fore-edge is exposed. Then, the artist paints the design onto the edge of the pages. Once the paint is dry, the pages are fanned back into place and the book is returned to its normal state.
There are a number of different techniques that can be used to create fore-edge paintings. One popular technique is known as “double-edge painting.” This involves painting the top and bottom edges of the pages with two different colors. When the pages are fanned, the two colors create a gradient effect.
Another popular technique is “blind-edge painting.” This involves painting the edges of the pages with a single color. When the pages are fanned, the color is visible on the edge of the pages.