Kay Nielsen (illustrator) - East of the Sun and West of the Moon - 1923

Kay Nielsen (illustrator) - East of the Sun and West of the Moon - 1923
Geïllustreerd, Kinderboeken, Literatuur, Art Nouveau - Aantal: 1 - Ingeplakte plaatjes, Stofomslag - Boek

‘East of the Sun and West of the Moon:
 Old Tales from the North’.

[From Sir George W. Dasent’s selection.]

Original dust jacket, publisher’s yellow pictorial cloth with blue and black design to upper board, black lettering to spine, top edges yellow, 24 tipped-in colour plates, 25 line drawings (including two repeats), decorative title page, 10 illustrated tailpieces (same design repeating, variously cropped), 284 pages, 24 x 16 cm. Jacket in textured paper with pictorial onlay.

First edition in this format and binding, circa 1923 

In Hodder & Stoughton’s Golden Series of Colour Books.

This is an early edition of Kay Nielsen’s masterpiece ‘East of the Sun and West of the Moon’, with 24 magnificent tipped-in colour plates. First published in 1914, ‘East of the Sun’ is widely regarded as a tour de force of the illustrator’s art, and remains among the most sought-after books of the era.

With its stylized, highly original blending of Art Nouveau, Oriental and North European influences, Nielsen’s imagery provides a unique accompaniment to the fifteen Norwegian folk and fairy tales in the book (selected from Asbjörnsen and Moe’s famous ‘Norske Folkeeventyr’). Seamlessly combined in his work are influences from, among others, Leon Bakst and the Ballets Russes, from the Swedish illustrator John Bauer, from Japanese prints (including Hokusai’s ‘Great Wave’), and from Aubrey Beardsley. Certain images in the book also bring to mind ‘Die Nibelungen’: the 1909 masterpiece of Austrian artist Carl Otto Czeschka, a member of the Vienna Secession; as well as the Russian fairy-tale illustrations of Ivan Bilibin.

Note that this 1920s reissue – smaller in size than the 1914 edition, and with more modest production values – is to be found in three different bindings: red, blue and yellow. The yellow binding is the only one to feature the distinctive figure with crown and sword seen here.

This particular copy comes complete with the original dust jacket – not in the best condition, but scarce.

Contents include:

East of the Sun and West of the Moon, The Blue Belt, Prince Lindworm, The Lassie and her Godmother, The Husband who was to mind the House, The Lad who went to the North Wind, The Three Princesses of Whiteland, Soria Moria Castle, The Giant who had no Heart in his Body, The Princess on the Glass Hill, The Widow’s Son, The Three Billy-goats Gruff, The Three Princesses in the Blue Mountain, The Cat on the Dovrefell, One’s own Children are always Prettiest.
 With Preface.

Contents very clean. No owner inscriptions. Usual age-toning to paper, text pages with foxing throughout (heaviest at front of book; plates virtually unaffected), slight bumping to some corners, one corner crease, around ten pairs of gatherings stretched. Two plates with small area of surface loss to inside edge, another with very slight glue staining to edge plus a little rippling to paper (all production faults). Endpapers with usual foxing/offsetting. Edges of page block with foxing, top with partial loss to yellow colour. Binding tight, with lean. Boards and spine with discoloration and marks as shown, bumping, rubbing and wear to extremities; cloth with a few nicks to head and foot of spine. Unclipped dust jacket with creasing, discoloration, tears and wear as shown, plus heavy nibbling to rear panel (see last photo); jacket split along rear spine fold (but securely held in new, removable archival sleeve).

Note: The second plate in the book is attached not to its own captioned mount (which is empty apart from the caption), but to a blank page immediately afterwards (both pages being included in the pagination of the book). This is normal for this edition, being a design flaw common to all three above-mentioned reissues.

Aantal boeken
Art Nouveau, Geïllustreerd, Kinderboeken, Literatuur
Auteur/ Illustrator
Kay Nielsen (illustrator)
East of the Sun and West of the Moon
Publicatiejaar oudste item
Eerste druk in dit formaat
Oorspronkelijke taal
Hodder and Stoughton Limited, London
Harde kaft
Ingeplakte plaatjes, Stofomslag
Aantal pagina‘s.
24×16 cm
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