booth highlights:       
          brooklyn 2018

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because Vannevar Bush said.
BOOTH 712.  Please find us at booth 712 at the Brooklyn Antiquarian Book Fair this weekend: Saturday Sept. 8th (10-7) and Sunday the 9th (11-4), at the pleasant Brooklyn Expo Centre in Greenpoint. Complimentary passes still available; if interested just send an email. Meanwhile, here's a brief list of booth highlights, from our general categories of the avant-garde, design, and human sciences. Because the Cloud forgets, and megabytes are hardly memories.

NEXT.  We'll be debuting our next list (no. 15) at the Fair this weekend: "On hypnotism, advertising, and active anthropology."

ABOVE.  An etched bookplate design from Sepp Frank (see item 04 below); one of two prints representing female book collectors, from a set of ten such portraits published 100 years ago today, at the dawn of the Weimar era.

TERMS.  All items in this catalogue are available for sale. Lots are guaranteed to be complete and to be described and delivered to the collector's satisfaction, with reasoned returns accepted within 15 days of receipt. Reciprocal terms are extended to the trade; institutional policies are accommodated with courtesy. Prices are issued in USD; sold items will be marked as such periodically, or directly upon request. Shipping is charged at cost. Various methods of payment are accepted. For acquisitions, please phone (+1) 416-729-7043 or email; priority is given to first interest. To receive advance copies of future lists, subscribe to our mailing list. Specific wants are always welcomed, from both new and veteran collectors.
LOT 01  /  AVANT GARDE  /  1915
MARINETTI, Filippo Tommaso;  and Francisco Balilla PRATELLA
L'unica soluzione del problema finanziario / Il Futurismo e la Guerra: cronaca sintetica.
Milano: Direzione del Movimento Futurista (Stab. Tip Taveggia), [1915].
Tonini, 92.1
250 USD
Bifolium (29 cm. tall), with contents of [4] full pages. With faint horizontal crease and short tear (4 cm.) to right margin.
The Futurist take on an antiquarian fair. With this 1915 manifesto Marinetti proposed a radical solution to the financial crisis gripping Italy in early WWI; one that would stimulate a dramatic increase in government spending, while also slashing personal taxes to zero, for at least twenty years. The solution? The Italians should sell off the country's rich artistic patrimony, beginning with sales of the Uffizi and Pitti galleries. Buy low, sell high. Through such fundraisers, the nation could generate the funds to defeat the pressing Austrian threat that weighed heavily on Marinetti; soon to be seriously wounded in the groin, while fighting-off Austrian airplanes, on a bicycle, in the Alps. The manifesto would provoke a referendum—it's not clear how ironic—sponsored by an Italian accountants' journal (Gli avvenimenti), which asked its members plainly: "to sell, or not to sell, the art?"

Marinetti's provocation is here joined by a short history of the Futurist relationship to War, as assembled by composer Francesco Balilla Pratella, with entries dating from 1909 to Nov. 30th of 1915.

END OF LOT 01   •• FOR SALE ••
LOT 02  /  AVANT GARDE  /  1950
COBRA (Association);  and Christian DOTREMONT
Manifestations décentralisantes et unificatives. COBRA Pour le Contact.
Bruxelles: Printed by H. Kumps, 1950.
250 USD
Self-wrappers (15 cm.), illustrated with coiling cobra image to front panel and early automobile to rear. With [2] pp. manifesto from Christian Dotremont printed to versos of wrappers. Staple-bound contents of [4] pages, providing a schedule of COBRA-related events from 26 May to 9 June, 1950, between La Louvière, Liège, and Bruxelles, accompanied by lists of the personalities involved, including Dotremont, Asger Jorn, and Constant. A remarkably well-preserved survival.

Present here: rather delightful evidence of the bourgeoisie pushing back on the avant-garde. A year before the CoBrA association disbanded, the various Belgian members (known as COBRA Pour le Contact) here proposed a programme of "manifestations décentralisantes et unificatives" for the Spring of 1950; in normal parlance—a series of symposia, talks, and exhibitions across three Belgian locations. However, "the arrogant language that Dotremont used in this booklet prompted such indignation in La Louvière's council that the exhibition was not allowed to go ahead. According to Noiret, the only activity announced in this booklet that actually took place was an exhibition of exclusively Belgian paritcipants from the group Cobra Réalité, held from 27 May to 8 June 1950 in Liège" (Stokvis, pp. 170-1).
END OF LOT 02   •• FOR SALE ••

LOT 03  /  AVANT GARDE  /  1960 - 1965
Boite mystere no. [89] / Mystery box. Never to be opened
[Nice, France], 1960-1965.
2000 USD
Painted wooden box (10 x 7 x 6 cm.), sealed, with unknown object inside. With titles (in both French and English) to letterpress label, affixed across two planes and bordered in funerary black; minor scuffing, with some lifting to lower corner. Hand-numbered (89) with the  subsequent "closing date" further inscribed by Vautier as "27/12/65." 

Dubbed by George Maciunas as the "100% Fluxus man," record-shop owner Ben Vautier (or "Ben") has relentlessly pursued the mantra "tout est art"—most famously with his écritures, in which he scribbles his name over myriad objects, staking claim to the World as narcissistic whole. With the early Fluxus work offered here, being labelled as "Tout no. 13," Vautier plays deviously with the aesthetics of duration: naming Nov. 1960 as the date of creation for this "mystery box," while sealing the box closed (with an un-known object inside) on December 27, 1965. With the logic of a dare, Vautier thus pushes the end-date even further; beyond every instance in which the box is not opened by its audience. "Cette boîte perd toute sa valeur et signification esthétique en tant qu'oeuvre d'art (mystère) à l'instant où elle est ouverte."
With no OCLC records discovered. A preliminary census finds other multiples from this edition at MoMA (no. 88), Fondazione Bonotto (no. 65), and within the André Breton collection (no. 61).
END OF LOT 03   •• FOR SALE ••

FRANK, Sepp; and Hans Ludwig HELD
Ex libris III
Muenchen: Franz Hanfstaengl, 1918.
Portfolio, stamped by the Munich-based binder Karl Ebert in 1917; tall marbled boards (42 cm), with versos lined with laid paper, forming clamshell. Contents: 10 large etched bookplates (with platemarks averaging 17 x 13 cm.), printed on thick paper (hand-made by Sepp) with wide margins (41 x 32 cm., sheet); loose as issued. Each print signed and numbered (XIX/50) in pencil below plate, and accompanied by decorative tissue guards. Prints remain remarkably well-preserved, with minor scuffing to the margins of a few. The suite of etchings is preceded by two folio gatherings, printed on laid paper; the first featuring title page, table of contents, and colophon (with this portfolio hand-numbered as XIX of 50). The second gathering features a 3 pp. text from Hans Ludwig Held, dated 1917.
Sepp Frank (1889-1970) is something of a forgotten artist today. Outside of his illustrations for the sumptuous 1921 publication of Faust, he's sometimes acknowledged as a minor painter, with some stained glass work also to his credit. With some digging, however, we find that he was also the artist behind (at least) six suites of etched bookplates, throughout WWI to 1923: Ex libris, Ex libris II, Ex libris III, etc. In these works, Frank seized on the possibilities of the bookplate as a sub-genre of portraiture, and the results are quite haunting—as he provides us with expressionistic portraits of Weimar Germans who were also collectors. Of note: in this suite, two of the ten collectors represented were women: Edith Kohn (whose image appears as our frontispiece) and Olga de Grieff (immediately above). 
Other collectors to be depicted include three medical doctors, Eugen Meyer, the influential historian and archivist (top-right above), and Bernhard Borst, an architect and eventual Senator (bottom-right). Frank, himself trained as an architect, also includes a number of architectural representations in these portraits, both traditional and modern.

This suite is introduced by Hans Ludwig Held, one of the co-founders of the German Writers' Association with Thomas Mann and Frank Wedekind (1911), who would later exhibit disturbing sympathies with the political regime to come. His introduction contextualizes Frank's work as portraiture (as such), praising him for mastering the metaphysical relationship between the Artist and the Soul of a situation.
With no OCLC copies reporting in North America for this third volume, which is scarce even in German institutions. Case Western has a copy of the first issue from 1915.
END OF LOT 04   •• FOR SALE ••

[Weimar notgeld album; mostly Reutergeld]
[Northern Germany], circa 1921-1923.
850 USD

Contemporary album (25 x 34 cm.), with padded "crocodile-skin boards" and gilt-stamped "Notgeld" motif to front panel. Contents mounted loose, via clever mobile fasteners, to both rectos and versos of 20 leaves; 258 individual items of notgeld, all printed in colour; almost all preserved in Near Fine to Fine condition.
Offered here: a well-collected album of notgeld: the emergency currency that German firms and cities began to issue in the wake of WWI currency crisis. Following the War, colourful series of notgeld (Serienscheine) were produced especially for the collectors' market, before the grim reality of the 1923 hyper-inflation un-kitsched the concept altogether. The present album consists almost wholly of such Serienscheine examples, mostly from 1921-1922, with the majority being from the sub-genre of "Reutergeld," issued by towns in Northern Germany, to honour the poet Fritz Reuter.
Named illustrators in this collection include Richard Zscheked, Heinz Schiestl, and Egon Tschirch, for whom there are over 36 examples here collected, many of them depicting the frolicing beach culture and fashion of the Osteebad region (see above).
END OF LOT 05   •• FOR SALE ••
[Sales catalogue of standardized cutlery and tableware, from the DDR's largest retailers' organization]
Germany, circa 1955.
500 USD

Smooth gray cloth boards (22 cm.), fastened with internal brads. Front panel features minimalist logo of the Volkseigener Einzelhandel (HO). Contents printed rectos only, with product images after photographs printed on glossy stock, along with product specifications; a handful of the products are presented without images. A preliminary leaf features a message from Direktor Vahle, followed by the first of four colour-coded dividers: for glass (15 leaves), porcelain (39), tableware (18), and cutlery (17).

Once overheard at a dinner party: "IKEA; where modernism went to die." Here, we have on offer a pre-IKEA (and post-Bauhaus) example of uniform design principles, from the Volkseigener Einzelhandel organization, which dominated the East German retail economy. The present catalogue, introduced by Direktor Vahle and assembled by the DIrectorate of Private Wine Retailers, offers standardized options for glassware and tableware for both restaurants and hotels. In a rather labyrinthine decision, prices were to be made available through regional organs.
END OF LOT 06   •• FOR SALE ••

GIACOMA, Pietro Marco
Riflessioni sul sistema frenologico del D. Gall e proposta di un craniometro
Torino: Tipografia Favale, 1836.
1200 USD

Printed wrappers (21 cm.), with minor wear and discolouration. Illustrated with statistical tables (in-text) and a large folding plate at rear (46 x 55 cm.), with very minor dampstaining to right margin. Contents are remarkably well-preserved; 117, [1] pages, followed by [2] pp. index.

The sole publication from Giacoma, an inventor who worked in Turin as a teacher of philosophy, physics, and theology. In this text, he defends the system of Gall against the contemporary prejudice against phrenology, for its "inevitable" support of materialism, fatalism, and atheism. Giacoma believes that the soul need not be forgotten.

Perhaps more significantly, however: Giacoma used this publishing opportunity to announce his invention of "il craniometro" (or what he also suggests might be called the "encefalometro"), as based on his patent from 1826. In addition to illustrating Giacoma's positivist measuring instrument, the impressive folding plate here shows two autonomous visual representations of the phrenological system, one featuring 33 faculties as embodied by Gall's preferred image of the skull (across four views), the other enumerating 29 faculties through Spurzheim's preferred image of the phrenological bust (across three views). The plate also illustrates physiognomical profiles of seven great figures, including Laurence Sterne, Immanuel Kant, and Francis Bacon.

With only 4 records discovered in OCLC and COPAC; only one of those outside of the Continent (at Yale).
END OF LOT 07   •• FOR SALE ••

[A general catalogue of hygienic teaching materials]
Dresden: Aktiengesellschaft für hygienischen Lehrbedarf, circa 1925.
450 USD

Contents brad-bound into custom green binder (33 cm.), with white-stamped design featuring the logo of Dresden's pioneering Hygiene-Museum; faded and scuffed, with some tape repairs to versos of covers and short edge-tears. With 13 pages of price-lists (mostly printed both recto and verso), illustrated by 19 black-and-white plates (four of those being 22 x 14 cm.; the remainder 32 x 24 cm.) reproducing 130 examples of teaching materials, mostly posters. With a number of contemporary manuscript annotations adjusting prices.

From the teaching aids department of the pioneering Dresden museum for hygiene, which operated in the post-Neurath context of visual education. This catalogue provides representations of posters that could be purchased by exhibition curators and teachers, on the hygienic themes of sexuality and STIs, nutrition, physiology, infant care, tuberculosis, workers' safety, and responsible alcohol consumption. Also included: a priced list of specimens available from Werner Spalteholz, one of the founders of the Museum, who also innovated the pre-Body Worlds method for making human tissue transparent, and whose organ specimens were first displayed at the momentous first International Hygiene Exposition in Dresden (1911).

With no comparable OCLC records discovered.
END OF LOT 08   •• FOR SALE ••

FARRAR, Clarence B. (1874-1970)
[A group of research materials on suicide]
London, New York, and Orangeburg, South Carolina, 1824-1964.
750 USD

This group comprises three items: (1) a monograph from Rev. Solomon Piggott: Suicide and its antidotes, a series of anecodtes and actual narratives, with suggestions on mental distress. London: J. Robins and Co., 1824. First edition. Rebound in plain modern cloth, with bold gilt lettering to spine. Illustrated bookplate to front endpaper, with Farrar's 1906 signature to half-title page. Contents illustrated with frontispiece ("Suicide providentially arrested"); followed by xxiv, 388 pages, and a 4 pp. publisher's catalogue, which has been extra-illustrated by Farrar with newspaper clippings (with Farrar's inscription to final portion reading: Brooklyn Eagle, 1884);
(2) [A collection of newspaper suicide reports]. New York (mostly), 1946-1964. Consisting of 10 postal envelopes (some branded by the Toronto Psychiatric Hospital, with one from the American Journal of Psychiatry), each with manuscript titles: (a) Suicides, 1946 [sealed]; (b) Suicides 1947 [with over 30 suicide reports, clipped from newspapers; two with portraits]; (c) Suicides, 1952 [sealed]; (d) Suicides, 1954 [sealed]; (e) N. Y. Times. Suicides, 1955 [sealed];  (f) Suicides, 1956 [sealed]; (g) Suicides, 1958 from N.Y. Times only [sealed]; (f) Suicides, 1959. N. Y. Times [sealed]; (g) Suicides, 1960 as reported in N. Y. Times [with a dozen clippings]; (h) Suicides, 1962, 1963, 1964 [with over two dozen clippings]. Envelopes housed within clamshell archival box, with manuscript titles to printed label from American Journal of Psychiatry, affixed to front flap: Suicide envelopes marked by years; and
(3) [Programme for Neuropsychiatric seminar at the Edgewood Sanitarium]; Orangeburg, South Carolina, 1949. Bifolium, printed in blue, postmarked on rear cover to Farrar's Toronto address. Contents illustrated after photographs of Sanitarium and speaker portraits; [8] pages.
Clarence B. Farrar was a graduate student of Emil Kraepelin, Franz Nissl, and Alois Alzheimer; some of the most innovative psychiatrists of the early-twentieth century. His own research would mostly concern war neuroses—such as "shell shock" (i.e. concussion in the context of War); a subject with which he was intimately related, given his prominent position with the Military Hospitals Commission. But he was also interested in the morbid phenomenon of suicide, apparently for quite some time.
The centrepiece of this group is undoubtedly a collection of envelopes featuring newspaper reports of suicides, mostly from New York, from a period before such reporting had become somewhat taboo. Rather eerily, the majority of these envelopes remain sealed; the related names and acts now hidden. The purpose of this collection is illuminated by a programme for a 1949 neuropsychiatric seminar at the Edgewood Sanitarium in Orangeburg, South Carolina, where Farrar is listed as delivering a presentation simply entitled "Suicide," on Friday, September 16; in the 12-1pm slot scheduled just before lunch.
Farrar's research interest appears to have been quite longstanding; judging by the extra-illustrated copy of Rev. Piggott's Suicide and its antidotes (1824) that was found in his research library. In this work, Piggott admonishes the folly of trying to deter suicide via criminal law and instead offers anecdotes of the distresses and actions of those who nonetheless survived their suicidal urges; as a kind of therapeutic mirror, for those who might need one. Farrar has here extra-illustrated the work by super-imposing a clipped newspaper article over-top-of the 4 pp. publisher's catalogue bound at rear. The title of said article being: "The ethics of suicide. How it was regarded by ancient and modern peoples. A pagan ideal of virtue. The verdict of philosophers. The Stoics. Rousseau and Voltaire. Causes of self murder in the present day." At the conclusion, Farrar has inscribed Brooklyn Eagle, November 9, 1884.
Copyright © 2019 Jason Rovito, Bookseller, All rights reserved.

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