MATISSE, Henri (1869-1954) - BAUDELAIRE, Charles (1821-1867). The Flowers of Evil. Paris: La Bibliothèque Française, 1947.
Beautiful copy on Rives. The editorial misadventures of Matisse's work on Les Fleurs du mal are well known. Contacted by a publisher in 1938, the artist opted for a cycle of portraits, like those he had done for Visages. Matisse entrusted his finished drawings to Edmond Desjobert's studio in the summer of 1944. Left between damp lithographic stones overnight, the drawings suffer from the heat and distend by about a centimetre. Matisse, furious at the proofs he received, had the stones erased. Fortunately, Matisse is used to documenting his work through photography, and he tries as best he can to reproduce the portraits from these archives, but fails. Louis Aragon finally convinced the artist to present photolithographs of these original drawings accompanied by a short explanatory text. These illustrations are accompanied, in each copy, by an original etching, printed on China, with a tinted background, to better match the photolithographs. Bidwell, Graphic Passion: Matisse and the Book Arts, cat. 28 and 31,
In-4 (280 x 225 mm), paperback. One of the 300 copies on Rives paper, this one n°249, signed by the artist on the receipt. On the frontispiece, 1 original etching by Henri Matisse, printed on Chine and laminated, 33 original photo-lithographs and 69 woodcut drawings and typographical ornaments by Théo Schmied. Undercover filled, specially designed by Henri Matisse. Editor's folder and case (some stitching and folds on the cover, back of the folder and case insolated).
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