MATISSE, Henri. Florilège des Amours. By Pierre de Ronsard. 185,  pp. Illustrated with 126 lithographs, 125 in sanguine and 1 in black, of which 31 are full-page. Folio, 382 x 283 mm, bound by P.-L. Martin in 1966 in full crushed tan morocco, smooth chocolate brown calf onlays in floral patterns on both covers and spine, abstract but sensuous gilt filets on top of the design, spine lettered in gilt, with original wrappers bound in. Preserved in matching half-morocco chemise and slipcase. Paris: Albert Skira, 1948.
This copy of Florilège is enhanced with an original drawing in red and blue crayon on the half-title evoking a floral decorative ornament.
Matisse's Florilège des Amours has 126 felicitous original lithographs throughout the book printed in sanguine plus: the extra eight original lithographs printed on Japon impérial paper; each of these lithographs signed in pencil by Matisse with his initials "HM."
A key illustrated book by Henri Matisse which took eight years to produce, bound in an attractive designer binding by Pierre-Louis Martin. In 1941 Matisse envisioned a large-scale edition of Ronsard, which he intended to illustrate with about thirty lithographs. The completion of Ronsard's Florilège des Amours was delayed by war, by production problems, and by the fact that Matisse's illustration program grew from "about 30" lithographs to 126 (!), making it by far the most lavishly illustrated of all of Matisse's books. "In spite of these vicissitudes, the precision and care exercised over seven years are evident in the combination of delicacy, strength, and spaciousness" (Garvey).
One of the special copies limited to 30 examples with the 8 original signed lithographs mentioned above. These eight lithographs constitute variations on the illustration for the Ronsard poem "Marie, qui voudroit votre nom retourner." From a total edition of 320, all on Arches. The colophon signed by both Matisse and Skira. Condition is very fine.
Duthuit, Henri Matisse, Ouvrages Illustres No. 25. The Artist and the Book No. 201. Chapon, Le Peintre et le livre, pp. 156-162. Rauch, Les Peintres et le livre 1867-1957, No. 173.
Item nr. 154497