Heads representing the various Passions of the Soul; as they are expressed in the Human Countenance. Drawn by that Great Master Monsr Le Brun and finely engraved in Twenty Quarto Copper Plates

LE BRUN, Charles (1619-1690)

Published by [not before 1801], London, 1801
Used / Hardcover / Quantity Available: 1
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Bibliographic Details


Title: Heads representing the various Passions of ...

Publisher: [not before 1801], London

Publication Date: 1801

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition: Very Good+

Description:

Rare quarto edition of Le Brunís ĎHeads,í a suite of twenty engravings expressing the passions of the soul. 4to (200 x 160mm). Engraved title and 20 plates by D. Lizars printed in sanguine and amber à la poupée, paper watermarked "C S 1801." 19th-century half morocco, marbled endpapers (some light staining, plates trimmed close). Overall attractive for its two-toned impressions using the same technique as Piranesiís Il Guercino (1764). Inscribed with date "1 May 1854" on title. From the library of Arthur Vershbow. Le Brunís work had been printed in various earlier formats as early as 1696. The present edition, not located elsewhere, was engraved by Daniel Lizars, father of William Home Lizars, engraver of the early plates in Audubonís Birds of America. Le Brunís project was deeply influenced by Descartesí doctrine of passions published in Paris in 1649. In it the French philosopher broke new ground as seeing the passions as equally good- since they revealed close articulation between body and soul. Le Brun saw facial expression as a language of the body, which allowed direct access to meaning. In fact, the most sensitive parts of the face were the eyebrows for their closeness to the mind. Each image is set above a descriptive text that describes the physiological attributes of the various emotions represented including sadness, rapture, pain, despair, and acute pain. Le Brun was careful to isolate every passion almost scientifically, while remaining partially conscious that in practice they could overlap. Yet Le Brunís perspective was neither wholly scientific of philosophical, but deliberately pedagogical, as he was addressing art students. Le Brun believed that even the symmetrical movement of the muscles on both sides of the face was not strictly necessary for expression but existed for aesthetic reasons. His aesthetic has enduring popularity and usefulness. Rarely found and maintaining great appeal for its honest display of human emotion, expertly and attractively crafted. Bookseller Inventory # D8460

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