May 28, 2008

The Twenties by Geo A. Drains

Geo Drains, Belgian painter and illustrator, is best known by bibliophiles for his work published at Le Sagittaire - Simon Kra : Les Complaintes by Jules Laforgue, Le Bordel de Venise by the Marquis de Sade, decorated with scandalous and erotic illustrations that Drains signed under the pseudonym of Couperyn. Close to the young André Malraux who was working at Le Sagittaire Edition, Drains took part in creating this eccentric and bizarre universe from the very beginning 20 years, period influenced by German Expressionism which also see the birth of surrealism.

The collaboration between Alfred Jarry and Geo Drains on Gestes, published in 1920, reflects this kind of black comedy that captures the grotesque aspect of human nature. Thus, the text provocatively entitled "Beating Women" sidetracks on the use of rubber made women, "a material which unfortunately splits and "died" after three years. But there is so man "natural" women who must repair all day long! "

Currently, the librairie Loliée offers :
  • Jarry (Alfred) - Drains (Géo. A.). Gestes suivis des paralipomènes d’Ubu. Paris, Éditions du Sagittaire, 1920, in-16 oblong. First edition illustrated with 7 original etchings by Geo A. Drains. Copie on Holland paper.

May 21, 2008

The lyrical studies of Banville

Well-acquainted with
Hugo and Gautier, friend of Baudelaire who greeted his talent since the publication of his first collection, Les Cariatides, Théodore de Banville goes against realistic poetry and rejects the drift of romanticism towards an easy and weepy style. For him, the beauty of poetry comes through a ceaselessly work on language. He called, besides, his poems collections lyrical studies. Both by his themes and his obsession with the purity of verse, he became one of the leaders of Parnassianism. His impressive work - 17 collections of poetry, rhyme plays, publications in periodicals - remains a model for many french poets of the second half of the 19th century. Banville also had a decisive influence on Mallarmé, Leconte de Lisle, Verlaine, Catulle Mendès, he regularly received at home. In 1871, he even housed Rimbaud, who was initiated to poetry with the journal Le Parnasse Contemporain, and who sent him several of his poems.

The publication in 1857 of Les Odes funambulesques marked a turning point in his style, more flexible, and brought him consecration. Les Nouvelles Odes Funambulesques, published in 1869, contain the famous poem "Promenade Galante" which, for the story, was set to music by Charles Koechlin.

Currently, The librairie Loliée offers :
  • Banville (Théodore de). Nouvelles Odes Funambulesques. Paris, Lemerre, 1869, in-12. First edition with a a frontispiece by Léopold Flameng. One of the 10 copies on Holland paper (with two more conditions of the frontispiece).

May 14, 2008

Les Chambres by Aragon

" Les chambres lettres déchirées
Il en reste des cris éteints le désordre d'avoir
Eté le désordre toujours d'être A partir d'un
Certain jour vivre n'est plus jamais que sur-
Plus jamais que ce désordre appelé dérisoi-
rement mémoire"
Quote from Les Chambres, poème du temps qui ne passe pas by Aragon.

Les Chambres is a late poetic collection published in 1969. Aragon goes back on one of his obsessions : time and, to quote the entire title, "le temps qui ne passe pas" (time that does not slip by). The text resounds this peculiar harmony proper to the poet who, playing with the syntax, detunes the traditional rythm of rhyme, flirts with a poised prose.
(On line reference : Aragon, la mémoire et l'excès a book by Olivier Barbarant).

Currently, the librairie Loliée offers :
  • [Man Ray] - Aragon. Les Chambres. Poème du temps qui ne passe pas. Paris, Les Editeurs Français réunis, 1969, in-12, in leaves, case. One of the 80 copies signed by Aragon and including in frontispiece, an original etching by Man Ray, numbered and signed.