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LONDON A Pilgrimage
London: Grant & Co., 1872. First edition of ?Doré?s chef d?oeuvre? (Bland). A publisher's presentation copy with manuscript inscription to Parisian art dealer Georges Petit, one of the most formidable and important promoters of Impressionist artists. Petit represented and promoted Doré from time to time and his gallery sold on occasion Doré's most important paintings such as Les Océanides (Les Naiades de la mer), which it sold in 1912. Also with 20th century provenance of Scottish literary agent and author, Giles Alexander Esme Gordon. With one hundred and eighty fantastical engraved illustrations by Gustave Doré, many of which are full size plates. Large Folio, finely bound, most likely for Giles Gordon, in three-quarter green morocco and marbled boards in period style. The spine with flat bands ruled in gilt and with elegant central gilt tools, lettered in two compartments and at the tail, corner-pieces and backing gilt ruled where the meet the fine marbled paper. [xiv], xii, 191 pp. A unique and very handsome copy, the binding very fine with only the minor evidence of shelving on the lower edge, very fine and attractive, internally, very solid and strong, a little mellowing to a few leaves from use or age. FIRST EDITION OF WHAT MANY CONSIDER TO BE DORE'S MOST IMPORTANT AND FANTASTICAL WORK, AND THIS A PUBLISHER'S PRESENTATION COPY TO A HIGHLY IMPORTANT FRENCH ART DEALER AND PROMOTER. This is also one of Doré?s less common works, rarely encountered and a superb example of his talent. ?Doré?s devastating realization of the contrast of wealth and poverty in a modern metropolis makes LONDON one of the great illustrated books of the world. The English edition antedates the French by four years, and indeed it is a handsomer book? (Ray). Ruari McLean, in his book VICTORIAN BOOK DESIGN, says of it: ?...perhaps the finest and most original book of monochrome wood engraving published in London during this period was the work of a Frenchman, Gustave Doré. This was his LONDON, A PILGRIMAGE... [Doré?s illustrations] make the English illustrations of the sixties look puny.? The engraved illustrations and accompanying text show many aspects of the city, but dwell on the picturesque clutter and the squalor of the poorer districts. ?Jerrold, whose text accompanies the plates, was a well known London journalist who conceived the work and accompanied the artist in exploring London--sometimes with special police protection. Doré was able to explore the vitality and ruthlessness of Victorian London and depict these conditions through his extraordinary graphics.?
      [Bookseller: Buddenbrooks, Inc.]
Last Found On: 2016-01-21           Check availability:      Biblio    


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