Le chien de coeur

Year: 1969

Author: René Char (1907 - 1988)

Artist: Joan Miró (1893 - 1983)

Publisher: G.L.M. [Guy Lévis Mano]

Le chien de coeur, title page

Miró called the publisher of Le chien de coeur one of those magicians with the ability to transform black ink into pearls and rubies. They collaborated on illustrated books ten times between 1948 and 1971, for which Miró produced the lithographs and Lévis Mano took care of the printing work. Most of these were publications printed in limited editions. Although 885 copies of Le chien du coeur did appear, only 95 of them included the colour lithograph that Miró signed in pencil.

They collaborated only once on a book for which Lévis Mano had written the text himself- besides being a book dealer, publisher and printer, he was also a poet, who debuted in 1924 and published his own work regularly, especially before 1939. He was drafted that year, departed to the front and spent five war years in German captivity as a prisoner of war. In 1943 the poet-publisher Pierre Seghers published the anthology called Poètes prisonniers with poems by French prisoners of war that had been smuggled to Switzerland. It soon became clear that Jean Garamond, whose poems formed a high point in this moving collection printed on drab war paper, was in fact Guy Lévis Mano, who had chosen the name of one of his favourite typefaces as a pseudonym.

Frontispiece, lithoby Joan Miró

Lévis Mano returned to his studio at number 6, rue Huygens after the war, where a motley crew of writers and artists came to discuss new book editions and artists' books. Four of the publications on which Miró and Lévis Mano collaborated contain poems by surrealist René Char. The typography of the GLM-books could usually be described as classical, apart from a few exceptions. As the years passed, the editions became increasingly austere, because Lévis Mano didn't want the experiment to affect the legibility, a vision that was shared by poets like René Char.

Bibliographical description

Description: Le chien de cœur / René Char ; [ill. de Joan Miró]. - Paris : G.L.M., 1969. - 25 p. ; 23 cm

Printer: Guy Lévis Mano (Paris) (text) Arte (lithographs)

Edition: 885 copies

This copy: Number 14 of 95 on Arches, with an original lithograph, signed by Joan Miró

Typeface: Garamond

Bibliography: Bénézit 9-669 ; Monod 2608

Shelfmark: KW Koopm M 763


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