Balthus Catalogue Raisonne of the Complete Works

Monnie, Virginie; Clair, Jean

Published by U.S.A.: Harry N. Abrams, 2000
ISBN 10: 0810963949 / ISBN 13: 9780810963948
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Former owner has written their name, zip, room # and phone? to both front and rear fixed endpapers, no other markings. Dust wrapper with edge crease to lower rear panel. Introductory material in English, other text in French. Full-time booksellers since 1987, prompt shipping and careful packing assured!. Bookseller Inventory #

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Review: The fact that this 500-page catalogue raisonné was approved by Balthus himself, the most mutable of authorities on his own life and oeuvre, will make it suspect for some historians. And the fact that the texts for the 2,100 black-and-white reproductions are in French (a long, earnest essay by Jean Clair is translated into English) will limit its usefulness for nonacademic readers. But the book is beautiful, and something even better: a cautionary tale about an artist of enormous talent tarnished by unresolved neurosis. As the poet James Fenton wrote of Joseph Cornell, even the most devoted admirer must sometimes turn away, when "the pathology glints from the depths."

Balthus has often lamented that his paintings are mistakenly discussed in terms of their subject matter, but it is the imagery that rudely seizes the viewer's attention away from the paintings' serene, early Renaissance formality and lush 19th-century brushwork, so easy on the eye, and directs it toward the spread legs of all those pubescent girls, to the knife on the floor near the nude on the bed, or to the music teacher's teeth tearing the skirt of her trapped, flailing student.

The hundreds upon hundreds of drawings here, as well as the 80 beautiful color plates of paintings, show the young Balthus as a master of haunting imagery--cats and streets and hills in shadow--that often melds Piero della Francesca's classical forms with an edgy, slightly surreal anxiety. They convey the tender poet of the European countryside, heir to both Caspar David Friedrich and Cézanne. But the nymphet pictures ultimately overshadow Balthus's body of work--not that they are anything but tame in light of today's erotic tastes--but because they come to seem the raison d'être of a second-rate romantic painter, rather than the personal quirks of a great one. --Peggy Moorman

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Title: Balthus Catalogue Raisonne of the Complete ...
Publisher: U.S.A.: Harry N. Abrams
Publication Date: 2000
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: Very Good

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Book Description Abrams, New York, 1999. hardcover. Condition: fine. Dust Jacket Condition: fine. Approximately 2200 illustrations including 80 in full color. Thick 4to, black cloth, d.w. (New York): Abrams, (1999). Fine. Seller Inventory # 272856

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Book Description Harry N. Abrams January 2000, 2000. Hardcover. Condition: Used - Very Good. The French painter Balthus is regarded as one of the great painters of the 20th century. Yet nearly 100 paintings, numerous sketchbooks, drawings and sculpture have escaped notice. This text catalogues all 350 known paintings as well as nearly 1000 unpublished drawings. Very nice clean, tight copy free of any marks. Wrapped in complimentary Brodart dust jacket protector. Seller Inventory # 205463

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Jean Virginie Monnie; Clair
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Book Description Harry N. Abrams[ EDITIONS GALLIMARD], Paris, 2000. Hardcover. Condition: Near Fine. Dust Jacket Condition: near fine. First edition. 576pp. About 2,200 illustrations, including 80 plates in full color. Light wear to dustjacket. could need extra shipping. Seller Inventory # 9985

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