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A libru apertu

Bookbinding and restoring antique books and pictorial documents

Visits : All year by appointment

Regions : Casinca - Castagniccia - Costa Verde

Categories : Craftsmen

Hameau de Piedigrado, San Nicolao village
20230 San Nicolao
  06 22 57 59 35

An air stewardess for twenty years, Denise Arnold did a 180-degree turn at the age of 40! Her passion for books in general, and old ones in particular, led her to take courses in binding.

Passionate about this new trade, Denise continued studying in 1993 and obtained a diploma in bookbinding and restoring old books at the Centre for Book Arts in Paris. After gaining her qualification, she stayed on as a teacher and again spent many hours flying between the capital and Santu Nicolau, where her husband was enjoying his retirement. Why not join him and settle in the village? Denise decided to take up a new challenge: with the support of the mayor, she set up her own workshop in October 2002.

The product of patience and precision, her work is recognized throughout the region. The Municipal Library of Aiacciu has entrusted her with the looking after its heritage collection for ten years, and Bastia Library offered a similar position in 2013. The workshop, located on the edge of the village, is also a place to meet and share.

"Whether it is prestigious books from the sixteenth century or school notebooks, the requirement for accurate work is the same. And,” she adds mischievously, “I must admit I’m often moved by the writing of the general public! One man, for example, wrote his memoirs over the course of a decade. He asked me to look after binding his work which means one volume a year. A interest in common and friendship has developed between us."

Denise cares for, repairs and protects special books, helping them survive the ravages of time…

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