(Paris: Librairie Gallimard, 1929). 168 x 109 mm. (6 5/8 x 4 1/4"). 172 pp.,  leaves. No. H.LXXXII of 547 printed on Holland paper.
SPLENDID METAL AND ABALONE SHELL BINDING BY FLORENT ROUSSEAU (his leather label dated 2017 on rear doublure), covers with brushed and corrugated silver metal frame, central panel of abalone shells secured with metal studs, silver-pink textured leather spine and doublures, lavender suede endleaves, original gray-blue paper wrappers bound in, suede-lined gray morocco chemise with silver lettering on the spine, gray paper slipcase. A pristine copy.
In a dramatic binding by modern French master Florent Rousseau, this is the first volume of a trilogy that examines marriage with Gide's typically piercing psychological insight. Bearing the same title as the classic Molière play "School for Wives," this work records in diary form a woman's evolution from starry-eyed fiancée to disillusioned wife. Gide (1869-1951) was described in his New York Times obituary as "France's greatest contemporary man of letters . . . judged the greatest French writer of this century by the literary cognoscenti." He received the Nobel Prize for literature in 1947. Binder Florent Rousseau frequently employs non-traditional materials, particularly metal, in his bindings. After receiving his baccalaureate, Rousseau studied binding at the Central Union of Decorative Arts and took gilding courses at the Estienne school. After working for three years at Établissements Julien to perfect his leatherwork, he opened his own atelier in Paris in 1988. As a binder, he endeavors to link his coverings to the content of the volume. Here, the iridescent abalone shells, which change depending on the angle from which they are viewed, are a perfect metaphor for the changing perceptions of the novel's heroine. In 2003, Rousseau received the Liliane Bettencourt Award for his binding of "L’Encre des tranchées," and a 30-year retrospective of his work was held at the Bibliotheca Wittockiana in 2018. (ST15091)
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PJP Catalog: ELIST 10.005