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Auction PR Publicity Announcements News and Information

Christie’s to auction old books and manuscripts in Paris on May 11

The next sale of the old books and manuscripts at Christie’s will be held May 11, 2012 and will present nearly 220 ancient books, artist books and manuscripts estimated between 1.7 million and € 2.5 million.

Among the star pieces from the sale retain an outstanding illuminated manuscript of a Machzor (prayer book for Jewish holidays) estimated 400,000 to 600,000 € and two major works by Matisse that are sure to attention: the famous Jazz (estimated 200,000 to 300,000 €) and an exceptional example of Pasiphae Montherlant enriched among others a large drawing by Matisse (estimated 120,000 to 180,000 €). Note also six autograph letters of Antoine de Saint-Exupery addressed to the young Marie-Lucie Decour, sold separately and each estimated between 6,000 and € 22,000 and an original edition of Les Fleurs du Mal by Charles Baudelaire estimated between 90,000 and 120,000 €.
Leader of Fauvism, Henri Matisse (1869-1954) plays a major role in the sale with the original editions of Jazz (1947). The Jazz includes 20 designs stenciled with 15 double-page and full page 5. This copy is enriched with a signed autograph to Professor Paul Santy (1887-1970) who had nursed him in Lyon in 1941. It was at this time as Matisse began work on Jazz.

Jazz is the only book that Matisse is both the author and artist. After experimenting and developed the technique of artwork by paper cuts and collages, Matisse finally accepts the proposal editions Tériade illustrate an entire book. He then hands the model of the structure and called the Jazz, as dictated by the dynamics of illustrations evoke the rhythm and movement of a jazz band. The success of the book is immediate. Matisse note about illustrations: “draw with scissors. Cut to the quick in color reminds me of direct carving sculptors. ”
Another important work of the artist, the copy of Pasiphae by Henry de Montherlant, meanwhile illustrated by 50 linocuts, and donated by the artist Martha Fequet, printer of the book. Typesetter and pressman daughter of Emile Fequet she succeeded him before partnering with Pierre (Albert) Baudier. Together, they held one of the most important workshops of Paris. Martha Fequet was very close and was very attentive to the desires and expectations of Matisse. His copy contains, besides a large original drawing signed, additional burns, their matrices and fifteen letters of the painter to his printer (estimate: € 120,000 to 180,000).

Another legendary artist’s book include the Prose of the Transsiberian (1913) Blaise Cendrars (1887-1961) and Sonia Delaunay (1885-1979), a copy sheet, signed by Cendrars, will be offered for sale (estimate: € 45000-65000).
In the section dealing with are manuscripts including six letters of Antoine de Saint-Exupery addressed to Marie-Lucie Decour between 1926 and 1929. He described his “strange life”, “his life so strange and distant” and his debut as a pilot on the Casablanca-Dakar: “I felt like such a toy […] As for daring to fly in the fog a country where the ridges dip in the clouds is, as I have taught ‘very pretty, but underneath there is eternity. ” This letter is accompanied by an original photograph showing a view of Cape Juby airplane annotated by Saint-Exupery: “This is all uncharted” (estimate: € 10000-15000).

In another letter, the young driver says he will soon take over as technical director of Aeroposta Argentina in Buenos Aires: “I’m leaving for South America, perhaps for two years, making the line there low. ” He reiterated his friendship and the press to write to him: “Write me a note […] Think about times in my friendship has never been greater and be still this old friend” (estimate: € 12000-18000 ).

“It’s nice to travel but you can not know what you have to go live on another continent. It is no longer travel, it is becoming another […], “he wrote in 1929 in Buenos Aires:” Now I will not speak of Argentina, because I hate this country. I hate Buenos Aires and I am extremely unhappy to be here […] ” (Estimate: € 18000-22000).
In these letters adds the log book (October 16, 1926 January 26, 1928) of the Breguet 14 wherein each pilot signed on his return from mission. There are two signatures of Saint-Exupery on two flights on the Toulouse Cape Juby on 14 November 1926 and December 4, 1927. The book also mentions six flights of Henri Guillaumet and many others made by Julien Camoin, Marcel Queen Lécrivain Emile Rene Riguelle, etc.. (Estimate: € 10000-15000)

Sale: Friday, May 11 at 14:00
Exhibition: Friday 4, Saturday 5, Wednesday 9 and Thursday, May 10 from 10 to 18
Christie’s: 9 Avenue Matignon 75008 Paris