10 April 2008
Les jeux de la poupée -- The Games of the Doll. Text by Paul Eluard. Paris: Paris: Les Éditions Premières, 1949.
Quarto (242 x 190 mm). 15 hand-colored gelatin silver prints, and a small hand-colored cut-out mounted on the title-page; EXTRA-ILLUSTRATED WITH A SIGNED PROOF ETCHING bound-in as frontispiece. Black morocco, original dark grey paper wrappers and printed panel of pink wrap-around band bound-in, small hand-colored cut out mounted on the front wrapper, slipcase with textured paper sides. Provenance: Jean Brun (inscription from Bellmer).
FIRST EDITION. AN EXCELLENT ASSOCIATION COPY INSCRIBED BY BELLMER TO JEAN BRUN: "exemplaire de mon ami exceptionel: Jean Brun. 31 Décembre 1949". With 15 hand-colored gelatin silver prints and extra-illustrated with a signed proof color lithograph. Brun was a close friend and regular correspondent with Bellmer. He hosted Bellmer at his home in the south of France on numerous occassions, one of these during the war when Bellmer was trying to elude a hostile Vichy government. Actually begun in 1936-1937, but delayed by the war, Bellmer's second doll series, Les Jeux de la Poupée is a far more sophisticated enterprise than the first. Bellmer embarked on a "game" of assembling and disassembling the sexual identity of his creation, placing her in settings - domestic and outdoor - that established a heightened sense of drama. While some plates are very erotically charged, others suggest foreboding or menace. In the Freud-inspired world of Surrealism, Bellmer succeeded in transforming his camera, generally used to record the tangible, into a means of describing the intangible - the nature of desire. One of 136 copies, this one numbered 44. The Photobook, vol.I, pp. 106-07. With: the Bellmer issue of Obliques (Paris: 1975), in which Jean Brun contributes the first article: 'Désir et réalité dans l'oeuvre de H.B.'. (2)
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