COCTEAU’S BLOOD OF A POET, THE BOOK MADE FROM HIS FILM, WONDERFULLY INSCRIBED BY HIM WITH A LARGE ORIGINAL DRAWING
COCTEAU, Jean. Le Sang d’un Poète. Film. [Paris]: Robert Marin, (1948). Octavo, original tan paper wrappers, uncut. Housed in a custom clamshell box. $4800.
Limited first edition (“l’edition originale”) of the book version of Cocteau’s first film, number 566 of 2900 copies, this copy wonderfully inscribed by Cocteau on the half title with a large original sketch of a face, “Á Worth Durham, souvenir d’amity française, Jean Cocteau, —, Paris.”
When making the 1931 film Le Sang d’un Poète, Cocteau applied his “singular gift for divining truth by means of the fantastic” (Steegmuller, 416). “I didn’t know anything about the art of film,” admits Cocteau. “I invented it for myself as I went along, and used it like a draughtsman dipping his finger for the first time in India ink and smudging a piece of paper with it” (Steegmuller, 406). This book is Cocteau’s running description of his first film, a cinematic exploration of “the poet’s inner self,” illustrated with richly printed photogravures made from movie-stills by Sacha Masour. Text in French.
Light wear to wrappers. Two light stains to rear wrapper. A near-fine inscribed copy with a wonderful drawing.