13 June 2002
AUDEBERT, Jean Baptiste (1759-1800). Histoire Naturelle des Singes et des Makis. Paris: Desray, An VIII [1798-1799].
2° (510 x 315mm). Half-title. 61 lithographic plates by and after Audebert printed in colours by Finot and finished by hand, 2 uncoloured anatomical plates. (Occasional light spotting of plates and text, sectional title to the 'Seconde Famille' with segment torn from fore-margin, final leaf with short tear at upper margin.) Early 19th-century plum morocco, gilt-panelled covers enclosing the Botfield arms, spine lettered and dated and with repeated floral ornament, gilt turn-ins, gilt edges (a little rubbed).
A LARGE-PAPER COPY OF THE FIRST EDITION, published in 10 parts, the first two in February and July 1798, the remainder between January and October 1799. Audebert's monograph, which divided the monkeys into six families, was the more impressive for employing a colour-printing process in which all the colours were printed from one plate and oil paint was substituted for gouache. In developing this new technique, his experience as a distinguished miniature painter was probably important. His interest had only turned to natural history after a meeting in 1789 with Gigot-d'Orex, a rich amateur collector of specimens. But when Audebert died at the young age of 41, his reputation as an artist-naturalist was assured both by the present work and the later Oiseaux dorés (Paris, 1800-1802). Brunet I, 550 ('ouvrage curieux et d'une exécution magnifique'); Nissen ZBI 156; Wood 206.
Contact Client Service
New York +1 212 636 2000
London +44 (0)20 7839 9060
Asia +852 2760 1766
No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 17.5% will be added to the buyer's premium which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.
An exceptional example of the most valuable illustrated book ever produced — and an icon of American art — will be offered on 14 June to benefit conservation causes
An expert introduction to Bulgari rings, bracelets, necklaces and watches, including cutting-edge concepts such as the Trombino ring and the Serpenti bracelet-watch