André du Bouchet
1924 to 2001
Alberto Giacometti
1901 to 1966

In the poems of André du Bouchet, everything in the world has a voice, from the rocks to the wind. The poet, surrounded by all these voices, wonders which voice belongs to him. Over the course of the years, this question has been beautifully articulated, for the many works by Du Bouchet that appear in fine limited editions have in common that their typography is extremely sophisticated and austere. The collection L'inhabité, which was published by Jean Hugues, also has typography that is defined by its concentration and modesty. The poems were included in the trade edition Ou le soleil in 1968.

Encounters with artists always moved Du Bouchet to ponder his style. Alberto Giacometti, a sculptor and engraver, had a decisive influence on his work. Du Bouchet was in search of a 'painter's language' since their meeting, a 'langue peinture', a language that does justice to reality and things. Other poets of his generation, such as Francis Ponge, also strove to achieve this in their poems, but were doomed to failure because of its intangible nature. This gave André du Bouchet reason to rewrite his poems continuously.

In each collection, dust and air represent absolute reality, which the poet keeps seeking. He had this in common with Giacometti, with whom he spoke often and extensively in his studio. Giacometti continued to wonder about the things he had missed in portraits. From the early 1950s, Giacometti produced lithographs in which he presented portraits and his studio and the streets in his immediate environment. The lithograph allowed Giacometti more latitude than engravings, a medium that never fully satisfied him. He produced six engravings for the poems of Du Bouchet: a portrait of the poet (frontispiece), rural streets (three engravings), a tree (one engraving) and his studio (one engraving). They were printed by Crommelynck shortly after the artist's death.

Bibliographical description:

Description:      L'inhabité / André Du Bouchet ; [gravures sur cuivre:] Alberto Giacometti. - [Paris] : Hugues, 1967. - [47] p. : ill. ; 29 cm
Printer: Union (Paris) (text)
Crommelynck (etchings)
Edition: 150 copies
This copy: Number 21 of 150 on Auvergne Richard de Bas
Note: Initialled by the publisher
Bibliography: Bénézit 6-83 ; Monod 2953
Shelf-mark:   Koopm K 335


  • André du Bouchet et ses autres. Paris, Lettres modernes Minard, 2003
  • 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
  • Pierre Chappius, André du Bouchet. Paris, Seghers, 1979
  • Herbert C. Lust, Giacometti: The complete graphics and 15 drawings. New York, Tudor, 1970

Title page and frontispiece: portrait of André du Bouchet by Alberto Giacometti
Title page and frontispiece: portrait of André du Bouchet by Alberto Giacometti
Etching by Alberto Giacometti (p. [11])
Etchingby Alberto Giacometti (p. [11])

Etchingby Alberto Giacometti (p. [11])

Etching by Alberto Giacometti (p. [21])
Etching byAlberto Giacometti (p. [21])