Livres et Manuscrits

Online Auction: 22–30 June 2020 • 2:00 PM CEST • Paris
Livres et Manuscrits 22–30 June 2020 • 2:00 PM CEST • Paris

Eclectic, rich and diverse, this sale includes ancient books, rare paintings by Jean Cocteau from Edouard Dermit’s Estate and a fine set of illustrated works by Salvador Dalí. Further highlights include a collection centered around Marcel Proust, Robert de Montesquiou and Jean Lorrain, as well as a rare handwritten copy of a poem by Ronsard, and a previously unknown manuscript by Tallemant des Réaux.

Featured Highlights

Malraux, La condition humaine. 1933. Rel. Bonet. Edition originale. 1/39 réimposés. Envoi a.s. à Louis de Sadeleer
Malraux began writing La Condition humaine (Man’s Fate) in Canton, and it is there that the action of the novel takes place, beginning with the communist uprising of March 1927. This sense of the precariousness of the human condition leaves the characters with no other choice than a heroic death, confirming the values for which they stood.

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Tallemant des Réaux, Gédéon. [Vaudeville]. Manuscrit inconnu, en partie autographe, de pièces en vers
A very rare manuscript of one of the most famous chroniclers of the 17th century.
Partially autograph, this manuscript was up until now totally unknown to bibliographers: it contains songs that he copied and annotated, notably on the Fronde as well as the reign of Louis XIV.

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Ronsard, Odes des Estoilles du Roy. Manuscrit. [1573]; 3 pages sur un bi-feuillet in-folio. Chemise et étui.
This manuscript is the only existing copy of the original text before the poet rewrote it, "politicising" it. Its discovery reveals an opportunistic court poet who did not hesitate to skillfully remodel his text in order to please the sovereign.

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Dalí. Flora Dalinae. 1968. 1/75 exemplaires sur Japon. Suite de 10 gravures au pochoir.
A suite of 10 etchings on Japan Nacre paper with drypoint and pochoir in colors, each one signed in pencil, of fantastical flowers. Inspired by both Redouté and Alice in Wonderland, Dalí here imagines a unicorn dahlia, a musical lily, butterfly roses, and an erotic flowering sweet pea.

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Montesquiou, Robert de. Les Hortensias bleus. 1906. Ex. de Marcel Proust, avec un bel envoi. Prov Guérin.
An exceptional copy dedicated to Marcel Proust. The lengthy dedication is written as a poem in which Montesquiou speaks of the mourning that struck them both in 1905: Marcel Proust had just lost his own mother in September and in July, Montesquiou had lost his secretary and lover Gabriel Yturri, to whose memory the edition is dedicated. This work is from the library of Jacques Guérin.

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9 Remarkable Paintings by Jean Cocteau

"I started painting because I was tired of ink and because I needed a change of vehicle, to find other ways to get rid of what was weighing me down. I began to paint because I had discovered that the act of painting takes us out of ourselves to the point of anaesthetizing us, of making us insensitive to anything that is not the painting."
Jean Cocteau, Démarche d’un poète, 1953.

The sale of nine works by the artist, four oils on canvas and five mixed media on card is an important event for Jean Cocteau collectors, whether they be booklovers or those passionate about the artist's drawings and paintings.

His first oil paintings were of biblical or mythological subjects as shown by the four oils presented here.
They are as exceptional for their provenance as for their rarity and size.

The Paintings of Jean Cocteau: an Interview with Carole Weisweiller
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