6 December 2013
[LIMITED EDITIONS CLUB]. MATISSE, Henri, illustrator (1869-1954). -- JOYCE, James (1882-1941). Ulysses. New York: The Limited Editions Club, 1935.
4o. 6 etchings and 20 reproductions of preliminary drawings by MATISSE. Original brown cloth, gilt-decorated on front cover and spine; publisher's board slipcase (some wear along edges).
LIMITED EDITION, ONE OF ONLY 250 COPIES SIGNED BY BOTH MATISSE AND JOYCE, number 292 from a total edition of 1500 copies. "One of the very few American livres de peintres issued before World War II. According to George Macy, who undertook this only American publication of Matisse's illustrations, he asked the artist how many etchings the latter could provide for five thousand dollars. The artist chose to take six subjects from Homer's Odyssey" (Riva Castleman, A Century of Artists Books, pp.35, 61). When asked why he decided to illustrate the Calypso, Aelous, Cyclops, Nausicaa, Circe and Ithaca episodes of the classic poem rather than events from Joyce's novel, Matisse replied that it was because he had not read Joyce's Ulysses. A FINE COLLABORATION BETWEEN ARGUABLY THE GREATEST WRITER AND THE GREATEST ARTIST OF THE TWENTIETH CENTURY. The American Livre de Peintre 32; The Artist and the Book 197.
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