This collection of six illustrated stamps is from a part of a larger collection of fourteen images that accompany a new lavishly illustrated edition of The Book of Ebenezer Le Page by Guernseyman Gerald Basil Edwards (G.B. Edwards). The novel was first published posthumously in 1981 to critical acclaim.
The new edition, which will be published in late 2022 by Extraordinary Editions, aims to reignite interest in the novel and introduce new readers to this extraordinary masterpiece. It is illustrated by Guernsey artist Charlie Buchanan who has been an avid fan of the book since discovering a battered old copy in a second-hand book shop whilst travelling in New Zealand in 2002. Charlie’s work sits comfortably between illustration and fine art and showcases singing colour and poetic use of composition. All the images are created in watercolour with the addition in parts of crayon and chalk pastel.
The stamps tell the story of Ebenezer Le Page and follow the eponymous Guernseyman from boyhood through to old age. They have been chosen from 14 original images and depict some of the key moments in Ebenezer’s life: documenting his journey from boyhood flying his homemade kite on the Common, to a romantic reunion as an elderly man with his spirited love interest Liza Quéripel.
The island of Guernsey and the 20th century form a backdrop to Ebenezer’s story and the stamps. From the book, we can estimate Ebenezer’s birth to be in the late 1800s; the costume and feel of the images shift accordingly with the passing decades. Buchanan has roamed to all corners of the island to research costume, location, architecture and light to bring these images to life.