Search

Criteria:
  • Keywords = art & architecture
  • Album. by (MONOGRAMS and CRESTS). (MONOGRAMS and CRESTS). ~ Album. [British: c. 1850-60].
    A well-presented Victorian monogram album containing over 1600 cut monograms. Many here are private monograms and include a large number of women’s christian names, while… (more)

    A well-presented Victorian monogram album containing over 1600 cut monograms. Many here are private monograms and include a large number of women’s christian names, while there are pages devoted to regiments, naval ships, clubs, associations and Oxford and Cambridge colleges. The presentation is typical, but especially neat and varied, with the cut monograms arranged on decorative pen and watercolour grounds. These are often geometric (circles and other interlocking figures are frequent) but include a gothic window, patriotic flags, mossy borders, anchors and a heraldic garter. Monogram collecting was hugely popular in the mid-nineteenth century and collections like this usually included genuine examples cut from stationery, together with others specially produced by stationery companies capitalising on the fashion. These latter monograms, evidently sold in sets can be quite elaborate, often featuring gold inks and sometimes with amusing and whimsical subjects.

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £750.00
  • Idylls of the King. by FORTESCUE-BRICKDALE, Eleanor, illustrator. Alfred TENNYSON, Lord. FORTESCUE-BRICKDALE, Eleanor, illustrator. Alfred TENNYSON, Lord. ~ Idylls of the King. London: Hodder & Stoughton, [ 1911].
    Number 184 of 350 copies, signed by the artist. ‘Eleanor Fortescue-Brickdale never married, and from 1903 to 1943 she lived with her sister, Kate, who… (more)

    Number 184 of 350 copies, signed by the artist. ‘Eleanor Fortescue-Brickdale never married, and from 1903 to 1943 she lived with her sister, Kate, who was also unmarried, at 23 Elsham Road, Shepherd's Bush. She travelled often to the continent and was clearly influenced by the fifteenth- and early sixteenth-century art which she saw on visits to Italy. There were further exhibitions of her works at Leighton House in 1904, with a catalogue containing appreciative remarks by George Frederic Watts, and at Dowdeswell’s in 1905 and 1909. She continued her illustrative work, which from about 1905 consisted of both line drawings and watercolours made for reproduction as half-tone colour plates. In 1911 two editions of Tennyson’s Idylls of the King (de luxe and popular) were published with illustrations from her watercolours while the originals were on show in another of her one-woman exhibitions, this time at the Leicester Galleries. From that year she taught in the art school in Kensington founded by Byam Shaw’ (Oxford DNB).

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £800.00
  • An Encyclopaedia of Gardening; comprising the Theory and Practice of Horticulture, Floriculture, Arboriculture, and Landscape-Gardening... illustrated with many hundred engravings on wood by Branston. by LOUDON, J[ohn] C[laudius]. LOUDON, J[ohn] C[laudius]. ~ An Encyclopaedia of Gardening; comprising the Theory and Practice of Horticulture, Floriculture, Arboriculture, and Landscape-Gardening... illustrated with many hundred engravings on wood by Branston. London: Longman, Rees, Orme, Brown, and Green, [1830].
    Second (revised) edition (the first of 1822). Loudon’s was one of the most widely read gardening encyclopaedias of the Victorian era and ran to at… (more)

    Second (revised) edition (the first of 1822). Loudon’s was one of the most widely read gardening encyclopaedias of the Victorian era and ran to at east six editions, covering plant culture, botany, garden design, and an international survey and history of gardening.

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £175.00
  • Introductiones apotelesmaticae elegantes, in chyromantiam, physiognomiam, astrologiam naturalem, complexiones hominum, naturas planetarum, cum periaxiomatibus de faciebus signorum, & canonibus de aegritudinibus, nusquam ferè simili tractata compendio. by INDAGINE, Johannes ab. [or Johannes ROSENBACH]. INDAGINE, Johannes ab. [or Johannes ROSENBACH]. ~ Introductiones apotelesmaticae elegantes, in chyromantiam, physiognomiam, astrologiam naturalem, complexiones hominum, naturas planetarum, cum periaxiomatibus de faciebus signorum, & canonibus de aegritudinibus, nusquam ferè simili tractata compendio. [Strasbourg: Johannes Scott for the author], 1522.
    First edition of this copiously illustrated treatise on chiromancy, physiognomy and astrology, which includes three fine woodcuts by Hans Baldung, former apprentice to Albrecht Dürer.… (more)

    First edition of this copiously illustrated treatise on chiromancy, physiognomy and astrology, which includes three fine woodcuts by Hans Baldung, former apprentice to Albrecht Dürer. They are: the large title portrait of the author, the final full-page decorative arms and one physiognomical diagram of a man and a woman (p. 5 in the second part) — all three show clear echoes of Dürer’s style. The book was printed for the author, who was an adviser to Cardinal Albert of Brandenburg, Archbishop of Mainz and Magdeburg, the dedicatee (it was to Cardinal Albert that Martin Luther had addressed his 95 Theses in 1517).
    Indagine (1467-1537) was a Carthusian prior and humanist theologian who saw no conflict between orthodox faith and the occult sciences. The book was widely read across Europe and frequently reprinted, with a small format octavo edition from Frankfurt in the same year, a vernacular German edition appearing the following year, and an English translation in 1558 (with at least 12 more editions in English before 1700). It was placed on the Index Librorum Prohibitorum in 1559.
    Though we have been unable to identify the early owner of this copy, whose monogram appears on each cover, the early inscription is from Rainold, Marquis of Canhilac (Languedoc). Adams I 88; VD16 R 3108; Mende, Hans Baldung Grien, 458-460. Worldcat: Cambridge, Leeds, Folger (portrait mostly lacking), Duke, Princeton (2 copies, one lacking a leaf), Philadelphia College of Physicians, UCLA outside continental Europe.

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £9,500.00
  • Effets merveilleux des lacets. by (FASHION). (FASHION). ~ Effets merveilleux des lacets. Paris: chez Basset, M[archan]d d’estampes et fabricant de papiers peints, [n.d., c. 1807-11].
    A French satire on the excesses of contemporary fashion for both women and men — a woman has her corset laces mechanically tightened by a… (more)

    A French satire on the excesses of contemporary fashion for both women and men — a woman has her corset laces mechanically tightened by a fop in a ridiculously exaggerated version of Napoleon’s headgear and a young woman in a scooped bonnet and corset (which leaves her breast almost entirely bare). The corset enjoyed a brief resurgence in popularity in the Empire era, before being swept away once more at the Restoration. It was a frequent subject of mirth in the popular press on both sides of the English Channel, and while there are several French and English prints on the same theme, this one is very rare.� Not in the British Museum catalogue; WorldCat lists a copy in the Spanish national library, and there is also a copy at the Musée Carnavalet in Paris.

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £950.00
  • Ann’s Book... by PARSONS, Jacynth and Karl. PARSONS, Jacynth and Karl. ~ Ann’s Book... London: [William Brendon & Son, Plymouth for] The Medici Society, 1929.
    First edition of this attractive book illustrated by Jacynth Parsons. Parsons was a child prodigy, contributing superb illustrations to Ann’s Book by her father, the… (more)

    First edition of this attractive book illustrated by Jacynth Parsons. Parsons was a child prodigy, contributing superb illustrations to Ann’s Book by her father, the Arts and Crafts designer Karl Parsons, in 1929. In 1927 the Medici Society put on an exhibition of her ‘Pictures from the age of 3 to 16’ which met with considerable success. She later illustrated an edition of Blake under the patronage of W.B. Yeats, and several other works.

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £100.00
  • The History of Joseph and his Brethren Genesis Chaprs. XXXVI. XXXVIII, XL. by JONES, Owen and Henry WARREN, illuminators. JONES, Owen and Henry WARREN, illuminators. ~ The History of Joseph and his Brethren Genesis Chaprs. XXXVI. XXXVIII, XL. London: Day & Son, [1865].
    First edition of a striking chromolithograph book, with all the pages and illustrations orientated to be read and viewed along the long edge of the… (more)

    First edition of a striking chromolithograph book, with all the pages and illustrations orientated to be read and viewed along the long edge of the book.

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £200.00
  • Songs, Madrigals and Sonnets. A Gathering of some of the most pleasant Flowers of old English Poetry. Set in borders of coloured ornaments and vignettes. by CUNDALL, Joseph. CUNDALL, Joseph. ~ Songs, Madrigals and Sonnets. A Gathering of some of the most pleasant Flowers of old English Poetry. Set in borders of coloured ornaments and vignettes. London: [Charles Whittingham, Chiswick for] Longman, Brown, Green, and Co. 1849.
    First edition of these selections from Shakespeare, Milton, Marlowe, Coleridge, Spenser, Herbert, and others. ‘The ornamental borders in this book have been printed by means… (more)

    First edition of these selections from Shakespeare, Milton, Marlowe, Coleridge, Spenser, Herbert, and others. ‘The ornamental borders in this book have been printed by means of wood-blocks’. A collaborative enterprise between Cundall and the Chiswick Press it was printed in 2000 copies. ‘One-quarter share in the profits was to be paid to Joseph Cundall, but it is doubtful if there were any, since, in January 1851, forty bound copies and no less than one thousand six hundred and forty-two copies in sheets were sold to H.G. Bohn. It is a charming little volume and deserved a greater success: it is now a collector’s piece’ (McClean). McLean, Victorian Book Design and Colour Printing (2nd ed.), pp. 70-71.

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £150.00
  • A Booke of Christmas Carols. Illuminated from Ancient Manuscripts in the British Museum. by CUNDALL, Joseph, publisher. CUNDALL, Joseph, publisher. ~ A Booke of Christmas Carols. Illuminated from Ancient Manuscripts in the British Museum. London: Joseph Cundall, Old Bond Street, [1845].
    First edition of the first of Joseph Cundall’s illuminated gift books, with superb decoration by John Brandard printed in chromolithography. ‘The borders in the book… (more)

    First edition of the first of Joseph Cundall’s illuminated gift books, with superb decoration by John Brandard printed in chromolithography. ‘The borders in the book were copied from Harleian MS 2936 and MS 3469, Royal MS.19.C.3 and 19.C.8, the DeCroy MS, and Henry VIII’s Missal, all in the British Library; also used was a Book of Hours in the possession of the publisher. The miniature paintings are from Harleian MS. 2877’ (Claire McKendrick). Cundall (printer, publisher and photographer) is also known as the publisher of the first commercially printed Christmas card (in an edition of 1000 copies) in December 1843 (the same month as Dickens’s A Christmas Carol). He later produced some of the most handsome illustrated books of the 1850s and 1860s, including the ‘Home Treasury’ series of children’s books. McLean, Victorian Book Design and Colour Printing (2nd ed.) pp. 90-1.

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £400.00
  • Aphorisms of the Wise & Good. by STANESBY, Samuel. STANESBY, Samuel. ~ Aphorisms of the Wise & Good. London: [Thomas Bessent for] Griffith and Barran, [1852].
    First edition. The frontispiece included a mounted oval collotype print reproducing an engraved portrait of John Milton McLean, Victorian Book Design and Colour Printing (2nd… (more)

    First edition. The frontispiece included a mounted oval collotype print reproducing an engraved portrait of John Milton McLean, Victorian Book Design and Colour Printing (2nd ed.), p. 137.

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £400.00
  • The Seven Deadly Sins... illustrated in Mediaeval Manner by Phillys [sic] Vere Campbell. by BOWEN, Marjorie. BOWEN, Marjorie. ~ The Seven Deadly Sins... illustrated in Mediaeval Manner by Phillys [sic] Vere Campbell. 1950.
    A rather extraordinary faithful manuscript copy of Marjory Bowen’s set of seven strange satirical tales originally published in the Pall Mall Magazine, December 1913-June 1914,… (more)

    A rather extraordinary faithful manuscript copy of Marjory Bowen’s set of seven strange satirical tales originally published in the Pall Mall Magazine, December 1913-June 1914, complete with copies of the original illustrations by Bowen’s sister Phyllis Vere Campbell. The identity of the very accomplished copyist is provided only by the monogram on the title-page ‘FMSB’.

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £800.00
  • The Miser’s Prayer!! by ROWLANDSON, Thomas after George Moutard WOODWARD. ROWLANDSON, Thomas after George Moutard WOODWARD. ~ The Miser’s Prayer!! [London]: R. Ackermann, Feb. 10 1801.
    Sole edition. A thin man in shabby clothes kneels in prayer before a candle on a chair, his toes poking through his worn shoes. The… (more)

    Sole edition. A thin man in shabby clothes kneels in prayer before a candle on a chair, his toes poking through his worn shoes. The window panes above a heavy locked strongbox are broken. ‘The miser confesses he owns nine houses, estates in Essex, mortgages in Hertford, large landed speculations in Russell Square and the neighbourhood, reversions of estates, trading ventures, “Mermaid” sloop, funded property, Government securities, &c. &c. he is beseeching an increase in his means, success in investments, and a rise in the “Stocks”’ (Grego). Rowlandson produced a series of such ‘Prayers’ as squibs in 1801. Grego, Rowlandson the Caricaturist, II, 30.

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £375.00
  • [‘Intérieurs Anglais’, a catalogue of 86 cyanotypes of British house interiors, 1880s–1890s]. by BEDFORD LEMERE & CO. BEDFORD LEMERE & CO. ~ [‘Intérieurs Anglais’, a catalogue of 86 cyanotypes of British house interiors, 1880s–1890s]. [Paris: Albert Lévy, 1900].
    A superb complete set of Lévy’s cyanotypes depicting English domestic interiors of the 1880s and 90s printed directly from Henry Bedford Lemere’s negatives. The photographs… (more)

    A superb complete set of Lévy’s cyanotypes depicting English domestic interiors of the 1880s and 90s printed directly from Henry Bedford Lemere’s negatives. The photographs primarily document the interiors of houses in England, Scotland, and Wales (as well as a small number of public buildings) and include excellent depictions of paintings and furniture. They include entrance halls, reception rooms, stairwells and fireplaces, with key details such as paintings, furniture, panelling and tiling clearly recorded, all allowing identification.

    These are rare, though two sets survive in American libraries: at Yale Center for British Art and at the Getty ― the latter incomplete but with a partial list of subjects, allowing identification of some 50 of the 87 prints ― Parham Park (Sussex), Astley Hall and Standish Hall (Lancashire), Swan House (Chelsea, London), Monkhams (Woodford, Essex), Curling Hall (Ayrshire) and The Cottage (Walton Heath, Surrey). Of special interest are the three plates (numbers 1-3) of Dawpool, (Thurstaston, Cheshire) home of Thomas Henry Ismay, chairman of the White Star Line, which clearly show Rossetti’s painting The Loving Cup purchased by Ismay in 1892. Another is of 49 Prince’s Gate, London, home of Frederick Richard Leyland showing another Rossetti, La Pia together with Burne-Jones’s Wine of Circe. 49 Prince’s Gate was one of the most celebrated aesthetic interiors of the period with a magnificent staircase (transferred from Northumberland House) and many other works of art including French furniture, Flemish tapestries, oriental Porcelain and Italian bronzes. Leyland’s collection was sold in 1892, making this image an especially valuable record.

    ‘[Bedford Lemere & Co.] was very astute in selling large numbers of its images to architects and craftsmen who wanted to appraise themselves of what their colleagues were doing or build up a body of visual examples for use in their own work’ [Culture 24, 7 May 2010]. They also clearly licensed some of their images to publisher’s abroad, in this case to Albert Lévy whose celebrated cyanotypes were widely distributed in France and the United States but are now rare in complete sets.

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £7,500.00
  • La Princesse lumière Conte de fées. by BARTEL, Jehan [pseudonym of Jehannette or Jeanette BARTEL]. BARTEL, Jehan [pseudonym of Jehannette or Jeanette BARTEL]. ~ La Princesse lumière Conte de fées. [Toulouse: Imprimerie du Centre], June 1905.
    A privately-published fairy tale by a young girl, of which we can find no copy in any public collection, nor any obvious trace of the… (more)

    A privately-published fairy tale by a young girl, of which we can find no copy in any public collection, nor any obvious trace of the work or its author elsewhere. The book is printed on a handsome glazed paper and incorporates three illustrations, presumably the work of the author. It was almost certainly her who also decorated the smooth calf binding with a whimsical design depicting an owl in a tree by moonlight. The printed dedication is to ‘ma chère petite Cousine Renée’, with this copy of what was presumably a very small edition inscribed to the author’s mother.

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £850.00
  • de l’Étranger a Londres. Album de croquis amusants contenant tous les renseignements utiles sur Londres et ses environs. by GUIDE COMIQUE GUIDE COMIQUE ~ de l’Étranger a Londres. Album de croquis amusants contenant tous les renseignements utiles sur Londres et ses environs. Paris: Imprimerie Jouaust père et fils, 1862.
    Sole edition of this comic guide to London and the English, issued to coincide with the Great Exhibition. The four letterpress pages give some limited… (more)

    Sole edition of this comic guide to London and the English, issued to coincide with the Great Exhibition. The four letterpress pages give some limited information for visitors: English money, the major sites (headed of course with the Crystal Palace), several hotels, inns and restaurants, carriage and boat fare, a few useful phrases and some baffling tips on British manners ― but this is really a vehicle for the 14 comic plates. They depict 46 numbered scenes or characters including: a coachman and a sweep, The Times newspaper, two pugilists, judges, beggars, hawkers, a Scotsman, huge barrels of drink (labelled ‘Monster Cask’) and a ratcatcher. The cover attributes the lithographs to ‘Mr Cric’ and the text to ‘Mr Crac’ and gives Paris and London booksellers’ addresses, with a price of ‘1 Shelling’. Worldcat lists the Vanderbilt University copy only; no British copies located in Library Hub; the CCFr lists a single copy in France (Bar le Duc).

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £600.00
  • [A bound collection of 54 plates] by MOTZ, Johann Michael, heirs of; and Albrecht SCHMIDT. MOTZ, Johann Michael, heirs of; and Albrecht SCHMIDT. ~ [A bound collection of 54 plates] Augsburg [n.d. but soon after 1750].
    An interesting collection of fifty-four rare hand coloured plates by Augsburg publishers Johann Michael Motz and Albrecht Schmidt, very much in the style of the… (more)

    An interesting collection of fifty-four rare hand coloured plates by Augsburg publishers Johann Michael Motz and Albrecht Schmidt, very much in the style of the recreational and educational prints of the slightly earlier Augsburg engraver-publisher Martin Engelbrecht. Like Engelbrecht’s, these prints were intended for popular consumption and were often cut up for albums or other decorative decoupage projects. All are very rare, notably the fine 4-plate suite of the continents here (Europe, Asia, Africa and America) and a very substantial part of the biblical sequence by Schmidt. There are also plates for the four seasons, the elements and times of day, two hunting plates and another after Boucher. The album was evidently put together c. 1800 from two or more constituent parts, perhaps already quite well used to judge by the variation in condition across the collection and by the various patterns of previous stab holes. An early owner/user has added some amusing pencil drawings to the rear endpapers.

    Motz specialised in devotional cards, memento moris and these larger format prints which could be cut out and pasted to screens, furniture, walls and other decorative projects. As a result they are exceptionally rare in standard print collections.

    Comprising:

    1. Les Amans Surpris (after Boucher, c. 1755), Motz.
    2. Les Plaisirs au jardin & La musique, 2 plates, Motz.
    3. [The Continents] Europa, Asia, Africa, America, 4 plates, lower lines of verses and imprint cropped, but Motz after I. Waxmuth.
    4. [The Seasons] Der Frühling, Der Sommer, Der Herbst, Der Winter, 4 plates, Motz.
    5. [The Elements] Das Feuer, Das Wasser, Die Lufft, Die Erde, 4 plates, Motz.
    6. [Parts of the Day] Der Morgen, Der Mittag, Der Abend, Die Nacht, 4 plates, Motz after Stockhman[n].
    7. [Hunting], 2 untitled prints, Motz after Stockhman[n].
    8. [Old Testament. Genesis] 14 plates, numbered 5-12, 37, 40, 45-48 each with gold borders, Albrecht Schmidt. [of 56?]
    9. [Old Testament, Genesis, the story of Joseph]. 13 plates, numbered 1-5, 7-14. Motz.
    10. [The Prodigal Son]. 6 plates, numbered 1-2, 5-8, Motz after C. Vogt (stubs of plates 3 & 4, evidently cut out).

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £5,000.00
  • Mémoires de Léotard. by (CIRCUS). LÉOTARD, Jules. (CIRCUS). LÉOTARD, Jules. ~ Mémoires de Léotard. Paris: [Simon Raçon et comp[agnie], 1860.
    Rare first edition of the memoirs of the great circus performer Jules Léotard, pioneer of the flying trapeze who inspired the 1867 song ‘The Daring… (more)

    Rare first edition of the memoirs of the great circus performer Jules Léotard, pioneer of the flying trapeze who inspired the 1867 song ‘The Daring Young Man on the Flying Trapeze’. A second edition of his Mémoires appeared in the same year, with the same pagination, but giving ‘deuxième édition’ on the title — almost all library copies appear to be of this later edition. The superb comic lithograph by Durandeau shows Léotard trapezing over the city of Paris, while adoring female fans cry out to him from the rooftops (some flying heart-shaped kites). With Blondin, Léotard was one of the first great celebrities of the circus, when he visited London in 1861, Charles Dickens wrote: ‘I have been beguiled into seeing Léotard, and it is at once the most fearful and most graceful thing I have ever seen.’ (Letter to Macready, June 11, 1861).

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £800.00
  • Jurons !!! pas de diminutions...... by LES VAMPIRES. LES VAMPIRES. ~ Jurons !!! pas de diminutions...... Paris: H. Platel. Cheyère, [n.d. 1826].
    A very rare satirical print depicting two blood-sucking landlords expelling a bewildered tenant. In the hand of one of the ‘vampires’ a note reads ‘eviction’… (more)

    A very rare satirical print depicting two blood-sucking landlords expelling a bewildered tenant. In the hand of one of the ‘vampires’ a note reads ‘eviction’ [congé], ‘end of lease’ [fin de bail] and ‘increase’ [augmentation] and all the notes scattered on the ground make reference to the real estate business. The caption reads ‘We promise, no reduction’. Paris (like London) was in the throes of a vampire craze in the 1820s, following the publication of Polidori’s The Vampyre in 1819. Charles Nodier’s melodrama Le Vampire was performed in Paris in June 1820, and spawned a host of spinoffs in popular culture and the press.�

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £1,800.00
  • Les grands effets merveilleux de l’Acupuncture. by (ACUPUNCTURE). (ACUPUNCTURE). ~ Les grands effets merveilleux de l’Acupuncture. [Paris]: Cheyère [and Mantoux], [n.d., c. 1825].
    A rare and amusing satire on the practice of acupunture ― much in vogue among certain Parisian doctors in the early nineteenth century. A sickly… (more)

    A rare and amusing satire on the practice of acupunture ― much in vogue among certain Parisian doctors in the early nineteenth century. A sickly male patient is receiving a doctor’s needles, the longest of which is seemingly destined for his heart; a young woman in a bonnet seems unimpressed with her needles (one pierces her tongue); while a young man throws down a set of crutches. On the wall behind hangs a painting of the martrydom of Saint Sebastian. Though known in France since the seventeenth century, acupuncture was revived in the decades after 1800 — Doctor Louis-Joseph Berlioz (1776–1858, the composer’s father) claimed to have used it successfully in 1810 and published a paper on the subject, while Jules Cloquet published his influential Traité de l’acupuncture in 1826.
    The print was listed in the Bibliographie de France for 1825 (p. 172). It was published by Mantoux and Cheyère (cf. the Paris Musée Carnavalet copy) though in our example Mantoux’s name has been cancelled in the imprint line.

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £1,200.00
  • [An Album of 50 Watercolours depicting Women’s Fashion. by (FASHION). (FASHION). ~ [An Album of 50 Watercolours depicting Women’s Fashion. Paris, 1867-8].
    A wonderful collection of contemporary fashion designs for the year 1867-8. The title-page, (marked ‘5ème volume) is an emblem of the ever-changing nature of fashion… (more)

    A wonderful collection of contemporary fashion designs for the year 1867-8. The title-page, (marked ‘5ème volume) is an emblem of the ever-changing nature of fashion ― two richly-dressed women stand between marker posts for the years 1867 and 1868, one in deep winter attire with bonnet, scarf, cape and muff, the other in the light spring garments of the following year. Between them an elegant dandy stands with a velocipede (suggesting modernity, movement and rapidity) and above is a cartouche enclosing a naked woman below the legend: ‘Comment l’habiller-t-on?’ (‘how will they dress?’). The final leaf is similarly emblematic, with a splendidly-attired young woman in green stepping from 1868 to 1869 over a running stream.
    Anonymous and evidently once part of a sequence, these brilliant watercolours depict Parisian fashions at their most colourful and sumptuous. Those showing off fabrics with new chemical or aniline dyes of green, mauve and blue are often heightened with gum arabic, adding a lustrous sheen, evocative of rich and heavy silks then much in vogue. Skirts are full and often multi-layered, with arrangements for lifting the outermost layer for walking. Special attention is paid to the backs of these outfits, with a good number seen from the side or behind, showing the elaborate ruffles and bows (which would develop into fully-blown bustles in the following decade). There are stripes, plaids, pleats, ruffles, embroidery, lace and beadwork. Hairstyles are also carefully depicted, with long and thick tresses in a variety of braids and tresses, as well as luxuriantly loose styles.
    The anonymous artist was a highly accomplished fashion artist, brilliantly equipped to render details and textures of fabrics, dress and deportment, of the type employed by designers and couturiers to show off to prospective customers their latest creations. This is a remarkable record of a golden age of Parisian dressmaking at the height of nineteenth-century haute couture when designers such as Charles Worth were claiming the city as the focus of the fashionable world.

    (see full details)
    View basket More details Price: £8,500.00