Dada, Surrealism, War and its Aftermath 1935-1955

The Artists’ books in this gallery reflect the creativity and optimism of publishers, such as Ambroise Vollard, Albert Skira, and Tériade who, both before and after World War II, created ambitious and complex volumes with some of the greatest artists of the era. In contrast, however, the content of a number of books reflects the period of the 1930s and 1940s as a time of economic depression and a world war, followed by an uneasy peace. The variety of materials used in the construction of the books, from the simplest pamphlet clandestinely made in Paris under the occupying noses of the Nazis to luxurious volumes where no expense was spared, display their individuality and idiosyncratic nature during this period.

Fables of Aesop by Aesop

Book with 1 pen and ink drawing on cream wove paper, 52 line-block reproductions after pen-and-ink drawings on Guarro's Spanish pure rag paper. (Paris: Harrison of Paris, 1931).

Fortune Magazine, Volume III, Number 6, June 1931

Printed paper magazine.

Museum Purchase, Reva and David Logan Fund.

Poésies by Stéphane Mallarme

Book with 29 etchings on wove paper specially made by Arches; loose in ivory wove Japan paper wrapper with lettering on the cover.

Réincarnation du Père Ubu

Book with 132 illustrations total: 104 heliogravure and aquatints with wood engraving, etching and roulette work (some) on Montval à la main paper. (Paris: Ambroise Vollard, 1932).

Wild Pilgrimage by Lynd Kendall Ward

Book with 99 woodcuts (40 in red, 59 in black); bound in cloth covered boards with a woodcut pasted on front cover, title pasted on spine. (New York: Harrison Smith & Robert Haas, 1932)

The Surrealism Gallery

A portrait of Ambroise Vollard,  behind a stack of books

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