Joe Newman returns to Bookselling, Brings a Fine Art Perspective
- by Bruce E. McKinney
The Freeman's Oath
In focusing on this mixed media approach, now a dozen years after he first embraced the field, he is taking both traditional and contemporary paths. In the long established way, he is building a stock, planning to attend and exhibit at shows, and preparing to issue catalogues. As he knows from his years crafting descriptions at the Reese Company, a great story sells a great book. In this sense, he is a throwback to the era when books were sold, not simply described. But he is also a contemporary with the next generation of collectors and is honing his craft and presentation to resonate with them. For them, and all others that are interested, he has begun to delve into stories that illuminate subjects and inspire collecting. It is an original approach, a work of love and dedication that, if it succeeds, may help illuminate the path forward for dealers entering the field in this transitional period. It is already likely that the traditional approach to dealing, now frayed from huge increases in availability, and the corresponding narrowing of collector focus, will adjust in unpredictable ways. The field, in short, is ripe for change. A well-researched blog, with luck, may build an audience and for this dealer now committing himself to a career in the mixed media of collected history, create a business with a dependable income. It is a noteworthy undertaking.
He has created a web site that is up-to-date as well as ever changing to reflect the ephemeral nature of the web.
He is blogging intermittently but roughly every two weeks.
The Newman Blog
He assures that the blogging is a lot of fun. It is also no doubt a lot of work. Joe, as a professional writer, with a love of history, is determined to tell interesting, well researched stories. My sense is that this is the direction the professional field is headed but it’s a new direction and it’s work.
If you would like to buy his book, The Freeman’s Oath [link]