Signed book: Ulysses. Limited edition, numbered 529/1500. NY: Limited Editions Club, 1935. Hardcover, 9.25 x 12, 363 pages. Signed on the colophon in pencil, “Henri Matisse.” Autographic condition: fine. Book condition: VG+/None. Brown cloth-covered boards with gilt lettering and beautiful embossed gilt decoration to front; light rubbing to edges; gentle bump to front upper corner; light scuff to gilt illustration on front; and a block of discoloration to opening free end pages.
One year after the decade-long ban on publishing Ulysses in the United States was lifted, George Macy of the Limited Edition Club commissioned Henri Matisse to illustrate a deluxe edition of Joyce's masterpiece. While Joyce was excited to have such a prominent artist illustrate his work, he and Macy were somewhat disappointed to find that Matisse did not read the book and based his artwork entirely on Homer's ancient epic The Odyssey. The resulting book, featuring six original soft-ground etchings by Matisse and twenty reproductions of his preliminary drawings, was published in a limited edition of 1500, all signed by the artist; the first 250 were signed by the author as well.
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