John Sutcliffe



Old School Press, 2013


Designed and printed by Martyn Ould at the Old School Press, Hinton Charterhouse, Bath, UK.

Published in an edition of 99 standard copies and 25 specials.


When I first heard of this project from Martyn Ould, proprietor of the Old School Press, I was intrigued. A book on the subject of the classical colour schemes of Rome sounded fascinating, and knowing the fine production values and high standard of content matter with Old School Press editions, I looked forward to its publication. When my copy turned up I was not disappointed.

The edition, of which mine is a standard copy, is aptly printed in the classical Dante typeface onto an Italian Magnani laid handmade paper, with a particularly nice use of a condensed wood-letter type, especially on the title page printed in a vibrant ochre. The subject matter seems to me an ideal choice for a fine press edition, and it does make for a very enjoyable read. The Old School Press has, over the years, produced several books that clearly demonstrate the proprietors’ love of colour, but this one really goes to town. The author’s essay traces the history and influences of the colour palette used on buildings in Rome over the centuries. I particularly like the inclusion of the large separate folder containing twenty loose sheets, each painted with a large swatch of one of the twenty colours that the author describes in the book.

Not surprisingly, the edition sold out very quickly.




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