Year: 1947

Author: André Rouveyre (1879 - 1962)

Artist: Henri Matisse (1869 - 1954)

Publisher: Bélier

Repli, title page

The friendship between artist Henri Marisse and author André Rouveyre is evident from their regular correspondence on personal matters and art. Their strong bond allowed for critical views of each other's work. Rouveyre for instance was not convinced of the quality of the images in Matisse's book Jazz, and Matisse never managed to finish reading Rouveyre's autobiographical novels. He did however illustrate one of them: Repli, and instead of the requested (often perfunctory) portrait of the author, he produced six.

Matisse also made two linocuts for large initials that are printed in colour, four decorative linocuts in black-and-white, and six further portraits in lithographs depictingwomen. Matisse used a yellow-green gouache for the jacket on which he organized white clippings that together formed the title of the book: Repli. This jacket was put together in Nervet's Paris studio in gouache. In this way, the three techniques used by Matisse for book illustrations were brought together in a single book. Matisse worked on it during 1944-1945.

Pochoir is a technique in which parts of a design are composed in a particular colour with gouache by using a template. It is a kind of stencil technique that is done manually and is highly labour-intensive. In an edition such as that of Matisse's book, the work was usually not done by the artist himself, but was farmed out to a studio. Before World War II, Jean Saudé's studio was highly recommended, but for this book a different firm was employed.

In Rouveyre's novel, a man reflects on a great love he said goodbye to six years earlier, meditating on love itself, on the beloved and on himself. The story begins with the image he still has of this woman on his mind.

Bibliographical description

Description: André Rouveyre ; gravures de Henri Matisse. - Paris : Bélier, 1947. - 163 p. : ill. ; 27 cm

Printer: Mourlot frères (lithographs) Fequet en Baudier (linocuts and text)

Edition: 370 copies

This copy: Number 84 of 315 on Arches

Note: Signed by the author and artist

Bibliography: Bénézit 9-357 ; Monod 10006 ; Prout II-47-01

Shelfmark: KW Koopm K 355


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