Paris: Obelisk Press (1936)., A quite uncommon novel about Gilles de Rais by the rather obscure poet and translator who was at the center of the Paris expatriates in the 1920s. He was an associate editor at the New Review and translator of a Black Sun edition and an intimate of Jean Cocteau and friends with Hans Henning (Alastair). A very good copy, covers rather sunned , with light edgewear. One of 100 signed and numbered copies, this is copy #1.
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Two autograph letters from the acclaimed painter to his longtime friend and confidant, Charles Kains-Jackson, both dated 1926. Tuke was best known for his paintings of maritime subjects, particularly of nude young men at the beach. The first is dated 11 February 1926, toward the end of Tuke's nine-week stay in Jamaica and was written on the letterhead of the Waterloo Hotel on Black River. Tuke writes: " I have done quite a lot of sketches & studies & found some good subjects, if one was ever to come back here for any length of time." The second letter was dated at Hampstead, England on 4 May 1926, shortly after his return, discussing his plans to visit the artist colony at Kardomah, Wales with friends: "Masson, Colin, and Towsey are all staying this week-end with Sidney Lomer!" Tuke's patron Sydney Lomer once famously asked Tuke to define the genitals more clearly in one of his paintings. "Colin' was possibly Colin Goodwyn, a model for his 1900 painting 'The Coming of Day'; 'Masson' was in all probability the artist's close friend Charles Masson Fox (1866-1935); and the final guest would be the photographer Stanley Towsey. Tuke also writes "If you come here I can show you a number of my sketches and you can inspect the new room I have added to the house." Signed as H .S. Tuke, each 2 pages, the first 8 1/2x5 1/2 inches, 21 1/2x14 cm, and the other a bit smaller; moderate wear and soiling to the first letter and minimal wear to the second.
Five of the original photo-engraved printing blocks for the illustrations for the novel. The engraved metal plates are mounted on to the original woodblocks used in the production of the book, all of which bear the title of the book on the side. The plates are in very good condition, several are lightly worn and have residue of the inks used in the letterpress process. All of the blocks are capable of being used for printing in contemporary letterpress printing. Included are the cover illustration for the book and the plates from pages 143, 155, 169 and 207.
Paris: Sansot (1910) 103pp. A collection of twenty-four poems by the lesbian poet, published the year after her death. Vivien is perhaps best known for her tortured relationships with Natalie Barney and the Baroness Hélène van Zuylen and her drug addictions. One of fifty numbered copies (#22) printed on Japon. Very good in decorative wrappers. (Goujon, 43; Bac, p. 161).
München: Verlag Akropolis, . 158pp. The author's mystical philosophies of Clarism, the “new religion” that was founded by von Kupffer and Eduard Mayer in 1900, is elaborated in this early work. The development of this concept was a reaction to the monistic movements in the German-speaking countries.
Leipzig: Max Spohr . 100pp. One of several books published by the Estonian esthete, artist, and writer and poet, who eventually adopted the name "Elisarion." He studied at St. Petersburg, where he met Eduard von Mayer (1873 - 1960), his life-long partner. Between 1894 and 1897 they traveled throughout Europe and befriended Von Gloeden in Taormina. They eventually sought refuge in Switzerland during the war years and created an extraordinary "Santuarium" in Minusio where Elisarion wrote and painted a number of homoerotic murals. His "Klaristiche" movement there sought to blend together homoeroticism, Greek mythology and medieval codes of chivalry. His work was also published and reviewed in the gay magazine "Akademos" published by Jacques d'Adelswärd-Fersen. One of Elisarion's more uncommon works, on the Renaissance sculptor Sodoma (Giovan Antonio). A near fine copy in original wrappers, illustrated. Spohr bibliography at 422.
Eberswalde-Berlin : Jung [c. 1910]. 148pp. A quite uncommon collection of von Kuppfer's poetry (an one "morality fantasy"), most of which is quite homoerotic in tone (including "Antinous," and "Im heim der Liebe"). "Elisarion" as he styled himself, was an accomplished writer, poet and artist, who settled in Locarno, Switzerland, with his lover Eduard von Mayer on 1915 and began a religious movement called "Klarismus" which exalted the beauty of ephebes and sought clarity in daily life. He was also an early homosexual rights activist and penned Lieblingminne und Freundesliebe in der Weltliteratur in 1900, the first published anthology of gay verse, inspiring Edward Carpenter to issue his Iolaus several years late (see #). Published by Max Spohr's influential press, known for issuing many important gay texts. A very good copy, light spotting to front endpaper, front pastedown has some bubbling. The photographic frontispiece bears a printed signature by the author.
London: Enitharmon Press (1976). A posthumous collection of Welch's intensely personal poetry and a selection of his drawings, with an Introduction by Jean-Louis Chevalier. Mine was a lost and moony life Alone among the fields at night: Or in the loft with the sick smelling apples Blistering along the shelves in the moonlight. Mine was a life all to myself With torn newspaper about my feet, But now I lie beneath this enemy sky At the end of the longest street. Of a total edition of 660 copies, this is one of 60 special numbered copies on blue paper and specially bound. A fine copy. Uncommon.
Upsala: Esaias Edquist (1880). 38pp. Carl Pontus Wikner (19 May 1837 - 16 May 1888) was a famed Swedish lecturer in philosophy and is considered one of the founders of the homosexual liberation movement in Sweden. Against the argument that homosexuality is unnatural, he answered that only that which according to the laws of nature cannot occur is unnatural. And nothing is bad which does not injure or harm any person. He pleaded to all future readers to give homosexuals the right to get married. Very good in original wrappers, small closed tears to covers. Rare.
Three TLS and one typed card from Williams to collector Anthony Reid, all dated 1980. Williams was the longtime principal of the Jargon Society, the important small-press publisher founded in 1951 by Williams. The amusing letters are filled with book gossip and reference Ralph Chubb, Ian Young and a number of shared interests. Very good, laid into a custom paper envelope by Reid, along with his Ralph Chubb bookplate.
Paris: Tallandier . 221pp. Novel based on the life and favorites of King Henry III, long reputed to have been homosexual. A contemporary chronicler of the period notes that they made themselves "exceedingly odious, as much by their foolish and haughty demeanour, as by their effeminate and immodest dress, but above all by the immense gifts the king made to them."Very good in illustrated wrappers, light edgewear and browning. Uncommon.