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Late in his life, confined to a chair or bed, Matisse transformed a simple technique into a medium for the creation of a major art. I have attained a form filtered to its essentials. Cutting dynamic shapes from painted paper, Matisse created his images. While producing pieces for Jazz, the artist used a large brush to write notes to himself on construction paper. The simple visual appearance of the words pleased Matisse, and he suggested using his reflective handwritten thoughts in juxtaposition with the images. The original edition of Jazz was an artist s book, printed in a limited quantity. This selection from the original is an exquisite suite of color plates and text that, like the music it was named for, was invented in a spirit of improvisation and spontaneity. These magnificent cut-outs of pure color celebrate the radiance and emotional intensity of the artist s oeuvre. "
This is a superb celebration of 70-plus of the finest-looking books ever to have seen the light of day. Artists' books always contain art, and the art often serves as the primary reason for the book's existence. And the history of bookmaking, since the "Gutenberg Bible", contains examples of books whose typographic and design excellence is immediately apparent and beyond dispute, but which contain no art. Occasionally, the two worlds intersect and overlap, resulting in books as noteworthy for their artwork as their printing, as praiseworthy for their artistic content as their design and manufacturing. "The Best of Both Worlds" is a lavishly illustrated volume which explores more than 70 books that represent the 'best of both worlds'. This title features books whose pages reveal the best graphic work of the past century; artwork from the hands of masters as diverse as Braque, Hockney, Matisse, and Picasso - coupled with memorable texts from some of the world's best designers, printers, and binders.
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