René Magritte [ALS laid-in]

Soby, James Thrall

Published by The Museum of Modern Art, 1965
Used / Rust Cloth / Quantity Available: 0
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A remarkable presentation copy signed and inscribed in ink at ffe from Soby, MOMA Director, to S. Lane Faison, professor of art at Williams College and Director of their Museum of Art. Inscription reads: "For General Jodie and Corporal Lane Faison, / Affectionately - Jim / James Thrall Soby." TLS from Soby to Faison laid-in, commenting on dealing with Magritte in planning the MOMA exhibition which is the subject of this title. The two-page letter, dated Dec 3, 1965 and typed by Soby on his letterhead stationary form his home in New Canaan, CT, is single-spaced and covers completely the verso and recto of the sheet. It touches on professional issues (e.g. a museum job recommendation for a Faison student), personal concerns (an inquiry about Mrs. Faison's recovery from a foot operation), and art goings-on (a Fairfield Porter show in Southampton). Most notably, Soby writes about Bill Paley, who apparently was dedicated to collecting only early Matisse and Picasso and was, according to Thrall, now "hound(ing) me to take him around to the galleries to see the work of the younger Americans." With bemusement, he says of Magritte: "But really that Magritte! I write him a simple yes or no question and get back a twelve page letter about his theories on art. [.] I'm now trying to arrange his visit to New York for the opening of his show at the Museum. He won't leave Brussels without a) his derby hat and b) his dog." Soby relates an amusing anecdote about a dog he took along on an Atlantic crossing and concludes: "I think I'm getting a little too old for art or dogs but I seem to be like a punch-drunk old prizefighter. Selz and Selz having departed our ranks in the Museum, I had to come out of my corner, pawing the air when the bell rang." Some underlining and marginalia by Faison, in an unclipped dj. Bookseller Inventory #

Bibliographic Details

Title: René Magritte [ALS laid-in]
Publisher: The Museum of Modern Art
Publication Date: 1965
Binding: Rust Cloth
Book Condition: Near Fine
Edition: First Edition.

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