The Artist and the Book in France. The 20th Century Livre d'Artiste

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Year: 1969
Place: New York
Publisher: George Wittenborn
Edition: 1st
Language: EN
Pages: 368
Condition: FN
Cover condition: FN
Binding: HC in slipcase
Ft: 29,7x23 cm. 2190 gr.

- Contents:
1 The Livre d'artiste
2 French Book Illustration before 1900
3 The Pioneers of the livre d'artiste (1900-1931)
4 The Livre d'artiste 1932-1939
5 The Livre d'artiste 1940-1949
6 The Livre d'artiste 1950-1955
7 The Livre d'artiste 1956-1960
8 The Livre d'artiste 1961-1966
9 The Making of the Livre d'artiste
10 The Ateliers and the Autographic Processes

The French livres d'artiste - fine limited editions of literary texts designed and illustrated by artists - have a unique place in twentieth-century art. Most of the great painters and sculptors, as well as many younger artists of the School of Paris, have contributed to this genre: Bonnard with lithographs for Verlaine's Paralellement, Derain with colour wood engravings for Pantagruel, fatisse with lino-cuts for Montherlant's  Pasiphae, Segonzac with etchings for Les Georgiques and, more recently, Buffet with drypoints for Cocteau's La Voix Humaine and Minaux with lithographs for Marguerite Duras's Moderato Cantabile. Yet these superb productions, executed in autographic media and demanding the artist's intimate participation at every stage of the preparation and printing, are still relatively unknown outside France, except to specialists and collectors. The Artist and the Book in France is therefore a publication of major importance. It is the first comprehensive study of the fivre d' artiste intended for the general reader as well as the art specialist. The author traces the early origins of the genre, examines its history and development through the present century and discusses and illustrates the work of more than a hundred artists, many of them working today. He deals in detail with such-Subjects as the texts chosen for illustration, the individual elements of the book, ateliers and printers, bibliophile societies, patrons and collectors, the technical aspects of production and the various autographic processes. Mr W. J. Strachan has unrivalled knowledge of his subject, having spent much time over the years visiting artists in their Paris studios, collecting and ex- hibiting their work, and writing and lecturing on it. He has recently been made a 'chevalier des Arts et des Lettres' by the French government.
The majority of the plates have been prepared directly from originals in the author's own collection. The aim has been to achieve the highest possible degree of fidelity and to reflect the subtle variations of texture that characterize the originals. Closely linked to the text, these superb illustrations also form an impressive independent survey of French graphic art in this century and bear witness to its range and vitality. The extensive Catalogue Raisonne may be consulted as a self-contained source of reference. In addition, there are detailed Notes to the text, a Glossary, Bibliography and Index. 

368 pages including 181 plates in black and white; 8 colourplates.

Jacket design byKeith Cunningham, incorporating, a motif from The Raven by Mario Prassinos.