DELUXE ILLUSTRATED EDITION OF RÉGNIER’S LE BON PLAISIR, ONE OF 50 COPIES WITH THE DRÉSA ILLUSTRATIONS IN TRIPLE SUITE, IN BEAUTIFUL ART DECO BINDING BY KIEFFER
RÉGNIER, Henri Fran[ccedil]ois Joseph de. Le Bon Plaisir. Vignettes et Eaux-Fortes Originales en Couleurs de Drésa. Paris: René Kieffer, 1919. Thick quarto, publisher’s full brown morocco gilt, black and ivory inlays in an Art Deco helmet and shield motif, stamped in gilt, patterned cloth doublures, marbled endpapers. Housed in publisher’s marbled slipcase. $2800.
Deluxe limited edition, illustrated with 21 original etchings by Jacques Drésa (in three states: black, sepia-tinted, and aquatinted in colors), number 28 of only 50 copies in triple suite (of a total edition of 250). Splendidly bound in full inlaid Art Deco morocco by Kieffer, with Kieffer’s paper label.
First published in 1902, without illustrations, Le Bon Plaisir was the second successful novel by Henri de Régnier, well-established Symbolist poet and “one of the most distinguished writers of the day.” In the second half of his life, Régnier published a number of novels set in the 17th and 18th centuries, “written with elaborate libertinism and in a highly decorative style” (Harvey & Haseltine, 597-98). The illustrator of this deluxe limited edition, Jacques Drésa, was a key member of the Paris Art Moderne school, a late branch of the Art Deco style. Combining aquatint with the etching needle, Drésa achieves the best qualities of both line and tone. His delightful and numerous head- and tailpieces show an equal facility with pen and ink. Kieffer’s binding for this copy is artfully inlaid with Art Deco style helmet and shield motifs front and back, and gilt tooled borders and spine with alternating hearts and stars.
A splendid French production in fine condition.