Some of the most breathtaking pochoirs ever published

Séguy, E. A.

Prismes. 40 planches de dessins et coloris nouveaux.

Published 1931
Item ID 75812

excl. VAT

Paris, Editions d'Art Charles Moreau, [1931]. Folio portfolio (33.5 x 25.5 cm). [iv] pp. (half-title and title page); 40 very fine full colour pochoir plates. The original publisher's full-colour pictorial portfolio.

A very rare and well-preserved, complete copy of this enigmatic work by the French Art Deco painter, decorator and entomologist Émile Allain Séguy (1877-1951) (not to be confused with the dipterologist Eugène Séguy - see Young for details, including the "invented" middle name of Eugène Séguy). This is his last work (see, e.g., Hardy, and Vallée). The plates, on wove paper, contain illustrations based on minerals, finely coloured using pochoir. "Simply stated, pochoiris the French word for stencil. In the 1920’s and 30’s Art Deco era, the colour application process of the stencil was rejuvenated by the French, bringing color illustration processes for books and prints to new glorious heights. This interest in exploring the stencil process came in reaction to the proliferation of machine printing and the poor quality of color reproductions in publishing. With pochoir printing, the hand application of layers of pigment created dazzling effects that the camera or printing press could never replicate. Earlier stencil works, typically used for decorative surface ornament were quite primitive, with applied color areas outlined by the supporting cutout framework. New experimental techniques in pochoir refined the process using multiple layers of color applications for a single print. Pochoir printing was also easily combined with images made by lithography, woodcut, wood engraving, line drawings, or etchings, thus turning a decorative technique into fine art" (RISD library website). Some minor wear to binding, overall a very good copy. The colouring is absolutely spectacular. Hardy, A. R. (2015) Émile Allain Séguy. Ornemaniste Art Deco. Bulletin S.A.B.F 202, pp. 30-32; Vallée, M. (2015) Les portfolios d'ornements d'Emile Allain Séguy (E.A Séguy 1877-1951): de la flore étrange et contournée aux ordonnancements rationnels. Mémoire de Master 1, Université Paris Sorbonne. Young, T. (2015) Insect Men. Design Observer (website). Not in Schneider-Henn, Ornament und Dekoration.

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