Apollinaire
Year:
1953
Author:
André Rouveyre
1879 to 1962
Artist:
Henri Matisse
1869 to 1954
Publisher:
Raison d'Etre

Poet-artist Rouveyre was in Deauville (Normandy) with Guillaume Apollinaire at the moment when World War I erupted. Shortly after the war, on 9 November 1918, Apollinaire died of the Spanish Influenza. In the meantime he had fought on the front, where he suffered a head injury- Rouveyre drew the poet's portrait wearing a head bandage. His main literary works were also published: the collection Calligrammes, with influential visual poetry, and the play Les mamelles de Tirésias, for which he had coined the term 'Surrealism', which was thereby set for future use.

Upper cover of the cassette after a design by Henri Matisse
Upper cover of the cassette after a design by Henri Matisse
Dust jacket after a design by Henri Matisse
Dust jacket after a design by Henri Matisse
Etching by Henri Matisse
Etching by Henri Matisse

Rouveyre described Apollinaire's home on the Boulevard Saint-Germain, on the corner of Rue Saint-Guillaume, as an apartment on the seventh floor where dust covered the objects like a beautiful blanket. In a kind of self-made boudoir on the roof, two drawings by Matisse hung on the wall. The painter Matisse was very fond of Apollinaire, and at the end of World War II, when Rouveyre and Matisse spoke regularly, they decided to produce a book about their friend.

Rouveyre wrote the text of Apollinaire and Matisse designed the slipcase, a jacket, an engraving, 7 lithographs (portraits) and 3 linocuts (initials). Between 1941 and 1951, Matisse worked on his contribution to this book. It included a portrait of Apollinaire. The printing work was finished in April 1952- and the author was delighted with the blue cover with white lettering and the jacket with the yellow flowers that had been printed by the printer Mourlot. The book ultimately didn't appear until 1953, thirty-five years after the death of their mutual friend.

Bibliographical description

Description: Apollinaire / André Rouveyre ; [ill.] Henri Matisse. - Paris : Raisons d'être, 1952. - 86 p. : ill. ; 34 cm
1st edition: 1945
Printer: Mourlot frères (lithographs)
Coulouma (Paris)
Edition: 350 copies
This copy: Number 185 of 350 on Arches
Bibliography: Bénézit 9-357 ; Monod 10004
Shelf-mark: Koopm A 425

References

  • Paul van Capelleveen, Sophie Ham, Jordy Joubij, Voices and visions. The Koopman Collection and the Art of the French Book. The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, National Library of the Netherlands; Zwolle, Waanders, 2009
  • *Henri**Matisse 1869-1954: Gravures et lithographies*. Fribourg, Musée d'art et d'histoire Fribourg, 1982
  • Henri Matisse l'art du livre. Nice, Musée Matisse, 1986
  • Matisse Rouveyre correspondance. Paris, Flammarion, 2001
  • André Rouveyre, Souvenirs de mon commerce. Paris, Crès, 1921