The main function of an ex-libris is to convey information about the owner of the book through an engraving printed on the back of its cover or on the first page. But the ex-libris is much more than a simple means of communication, it is above all an art object made by craftsmen, graphic designers and artists. It is also an almost sacred object for bibliophiles or art collectors.
According to the classic definition, an ex-libris (Latin for "among the books") is a personalized engraving that includes the name or an inscription to mark the ownership of a book. Through the inscription, the owner marks his possession with his name. The ex libris stamp is usually stamped on the back cover or on the flyleaf of the book. In addition to stamps, handwritten inscriptions, stickers or labels that fulfill this function are also considered ex-libris.
The ex-libris is an accessory that you keep all your life to sign your book collection. It is one of the favorite objects of bibliophiles and collectors, but also of any lover of reading in general. It is an original idea, a very nice gift to offer for a birthday, Christmas, Valentine's Day, or even to mark an important stage in life, such as the arrival of a child, the completion of university studies, a professional success, ....
The owners of ex-libris are usually individuals, but there are also collective owners, for example: book clubs, academies, public libraries, universities, etc... Ex-libris stamps can be of interest to anyone who works in the world of books or who participates in a project that revolves around literature.
In recent years, the ex-libris (bookplate) is in fashion. The tradition is renewed thanks to a multitude of graphic designers and craftsmen all over the world who create ex-libris stamps. This situation can be explained by several reasons. This new wave of ex-libris is closely linked to the advent of the Do it Yourself culture and the rediscovery of craftsmanship and handmade. As well as the emergence of new materials and techniques, such as rubber stamps, photopolymers or 3D printers.
We find more and more ex-libris of different styles and new universes, although this art remains economically accessible. The same cannot be said for collectibles. A good part of the ex-libris acquire value over the years, becoming part of book auctions.
On the other hand, the emergence of social networks has allowed the creators of ex-libris to show their objects, to show their work. Online book clubs, influencers or youtubers passionate about literature have also contributed to raise awareness of the art of ex-libris.
Originally conceived as a sign mentioning the owner of the book, this cultural and communication object is, therefore, seen today as an art object made by artists and craftsmen and in some cases can be an object of study for researchers of the visual arts. In fact, the ex-libris is both an art object and a graphic object. Ex-libris can bring added value to the antiquarian and collectible book market.
The attachment to the paper book of many of us in a world where digital prevails over analog gives meaning to the interest in owning an ex-libris. Like vinyl collectors who also seek pleasure in the relationship with the object, the touch and the quality of listening. We cannot replace the experience of reading on paper, the noise of the pages turning, the textures of the covers, the smell of old books ... For us the paper book is a noble object that the ex-libris only embellishes.
If you already know what an ex-libris is used for and you are convinced that you need one, visit our ex-libris section or order your personalized ex-libris. You will never lose another book!