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Pecheurs d'Islande Illustrations et Décoration de H. Cheffer
L'Edition d'Art H. Piazza, Paris 1945 - 267 & [1] pages; Publisher's pictorial wrappers, with original glassine overlay -- wrappers and glassine dust jacket are folded over on their versos, in the French manner. Illustrations throughout by Cheffer, including colored head and tailpieces. An excellent copy with just minor wear to the glassine -- [#40/175 on Hollande Van Gelder]. The naval officer-cum-novelist Pierre Loti [1850-1923] published 'Pêcheur d'Islande' (An Iceland Fisherman), in 1886. Considered by most Loti's masterpiece, it is a novel of life among the Breton fisherfolk, and many critics view it as a literary manifestation of Impressionism, so it is a richly appropriate inspiration for book illustration and design. Loti was elected in May, 1891, to the Académie française. News of this honor reached him aboard his ship in port in Algiers. Loti made a statement upon his induction to the Académie the following spring which has become infamous: "Loti ne sait pas lire" ("Loti doesn't know how to read"). It was clearly a lie. His collections, including a considerable library, can been seen at his house in Rochefort, now preserved as a museum. Loti was nearly an exact contemporary of another man of the sea who became a writer -- Joseph Conrad. In fact, Conrad's friend and sometime collaborator Ford Maddox Ford tells us that Conrad read Loti at sea, and Ford recalls a copy of 'Pêcheurs d'Islande' which Conrad read and annotated with extensive notes. The illustrator of this edition of Loti's classic text was Lucien Henry Cheffer [1880-1957]. Art may have been in his blood; his grandmother was the sister of the mother of Auguste Rodin, Mary Cheffer. After studies at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris he won the Prix de Rome for engraving in 1906. In addition to his illustrated books, his work was frequently published in 'L'Illustration.' French people of a certain age will know Cheffer's work through his widely used series of postage stamps with his image of Marianne, the embodiment of the French Republic -- [in use from 1967-1971, the Marianne d'Cheffer won the Grand Prix de l’art philatélique français at the end of 1967. This copy of his edition of Pêcheurs d'Islande is an excellent specimen of a special issue on Hollande Van Gelder paper [copy number 40 of 175 -- with an extra suite of illustrations "en noir", as called for in the tirage]. There were also 25 copies on Japan Nacré (those copies were accompanied by extra suites in color and en noir, as well as an original watercolor by Cheffer). The copies of this edition usually encountered were part of the 800 copies issued on Vélin Bouchier (without any extra illustrations included). The extra suite in our copy is included at the rear, and is still wrapped in its original glassine chemise (now integral but with some rips and tears at the edges -- the plates themselves are fine and fresh). [Attributes: Soft Cover]
      [Bookseller: Antiquarian Bookshop]
Last Found On: 2017-06-09           Check availability:      AbeBooks    


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