Les Cathedrales de France. Avec cent planches inedites hors textes. Introduction par Charles Morice.RODIN, Auguste
Paris: Librarie Armand Colin.. .
Edition de Luxe papier pur fil de Rives. 122 of 250 copies. 4to. 297x241mm. pp. , cix [i], 2, 164. One hundred plates with facsimiles of sketches, drawings and studies by Rodin made by the engraver A. Clot. In total on the 100 plates, there are 138 collotypes in monochrome and colour with buff tone blocks, some with added pochoir in white, of drawings and sketches on cream wove Van Gelder paper. The paper is cream laid pur fil Rives (watermarks: "Rodin Les Cathédrales" plus the publisher's device, and "BFK Rives"). Very handsomely bound in contemporary red half morocco, marbled paper boards, signed by Johs Larink Hamburg. Some very light shelfwear, but otherwise an immaculate binding. The original card covers with gilt lettering have been bound in at the back. A beautiful copy, in superb condition, of an important work by Rodin, the only book published by him during his lifetime.
When he was seventy, Rodin discovered an interest in the great Gothic architecture of his country. In 1910 and 1911, he toured the land making “my pilgrimages to all of the Cathedrals of France”. The notes and drawings he made as he encountered these stupendous buildings form the basis of this celebrated book. This book becomes a “lyrical tribute to his belated discovery of Gothic architecture”. He recognised, and this book beautifully expresses the recognition, that the cathedral was the symbol of the French nation - “Cathedrals are France”. Rodin’s artistic response is nicely balanced by Charles Morice’s long and scholarly introductory history of church architecture in France.