SPL Hand Coloured Rare Book Collection Featuring Norman R Bobins

If you would like to get in touch, please feel free to contact:

MONNIER, Henry [illus]
Galerie Théâtrale.

Paris: [ca. 1828]
Ray The Art of the French Illustrated Book 135. Marie 275-295; Bobins III 974
Paris: [ca. 1828]

Title from plates. Large folio (352 x 270 mm.). Twenty-four numbered hand-coloured lithographed plates. Plates lithographed by E. Ardit and H. Gaugain. Plates 13 18 19 20 21 22 and 24 with embossed stamp in blind of E. Ardit in the lower margin. All plates mounted on guards. Nineteenth-century half brown morocco over marbled boards. Smooth spine decoratively tooled and lettered in gilt. Top edge gilt. Marbled endpapers. Light rubbing to extremities. Some minor foxing and/or soiling. A few tiny marginal tears. Bookplates of Rinaldo Cenni and Pierre Frelet on front pastedown. Small ink stamp on the verso of a number of plates. An excellent copy. As a boy Monnier had been fond of fairs and popular entertainments, and in maturity he was fascinated by everything having to do with the stage. In this engaging album he offers an informal view of the theatrical life of his time ranging from strolling acrobats and sideshows to the ballet and classical tragedy. Only an occasional performance is depicted; for the most part he is content to show actors at the side-scenes and backstage together with a variety of other people associated with the theatre. Monnier's command of this little world is authoritative and he presents it with vivacity" (Ray The Art of the French Illustrated Book). "The theme of the street entertainer was popular with lithographers although with the notable exception of Daumier their miserable state was not often depicted? Monnier a playwright and actor as well as a draftsman included this low theatrical form in his Galerie théâtrale which is otherwise devoted to scenes of actors rehearsals and back-stage life of the indoor legitimate theatre" (Beatrice Farwell The Charged Image p. 112 describing Pl. 1. "Sauteurs"). Coloured plates in order: 1. Sauteurs. 2. Phenomenes. 3. Une Debutante. 4. Une Queue. 5. Un Foyer. 6. Le derriere de la toile. 7. Une loge. 8. Un Comite de Lecture. 9. Un Paradis. 10. Une indisposition. 11. Une representation. 12. Mamans de comedie. 13. Chef d'emploi. 14. Cabaleurs. 15. Une Repetition. 16. Le Corps des ballets. 17. Troupe ambulante. 18. Tragediens. 19. Un ancien camarade. 20. Un Parterre. 21. Comedie Bourgeoise (le mariage de figaro). 22. Les Bienfuiteurs. 23. Une grande Coquette. 24. Lecon de declamation.