Saturday, February 5, 2011

homage to DALI (Amiel/Chartwell, 1980)

homage to DALI
Amiel/Chartwell, 1980

It may not be apparent to the average Dali collector that there are two versions of this book.

One version has an orange colored dust jacket decorated with The Dawn of Don Quixote (1952) over a sand colored hardcover (hereafter "ver. 1"). 

Another version has a blue colored dust jacket decorated with The Madonna of Port Lligat (1950) over a red colored hardcover (hereafter "ver. 2").

The content of each book is identical with one exception: both contain a unique Dali color lithograph. 

Ver. 1 contains a foldout color lithograph of The Battle of Tetouan (1962) between pages 72-73.  The Tetouan lithograph is of horrible quality, suffering from a grainy condition.  What a shame, this could be a fantastic lithograph.

Ver. 2 contains a full-page color lithograph of Gala's Christ (1978) immediately after the front free endpaper.  This Christ lithograph is of incredible quality.  It is so sharp, clear, and colorful that it almost pops off the page.  Bravo!

In my opinion, you might only want this book to harvest the stellar Christ lithograph.  My only complaint is that I would have preferred a different image for such a well-done reproduction.

As to the content of the book in general, it "contains insightful studies witten by ... knowledgeable writers."  Now, this may sound great, but most of these "studies" are filled with such cloying treacly that only a paragraph or two is enough to give you a severe case of diabetes.

Such obsequious pandering is far more than I can take.  I mean, I love Dali, but c'mon!  Reynolds Morse's fawning over Dali seems subtle compared to the essays in this book.

Anyway, the book is stuffed with many great photos and superb color reproductions, many of which are full-page.  You can't go wrong there.

There is a 1984 printing of this book, I am not sure if it has any lithograph, so beware.

Both 1980 versions of this book normally sell for about $20, although many people try to get $60-$100 for Ver. 2.  In my opinion, those people are insane and you should eschew paying that kind of money for this book.  I recently got a copy of Ver. 2 for under $20 in a lot with two other Dali books.

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