Ao fazer uma das minhas “viagens virtuais” pelas livrarias no estrangeiro, despertou-me a atenção esta – Donald Heald Rare Books, Prints & Maps | 124 East 74th St, | New York | NY 10021 | USA, que nos oferece excelentes exemplos de livros antigos e impressos nas áreas de botânica, ornitologia, história natural, americana e canadiana, nativos americanos, viagens e explorações, mapas e atlas, fotografia e muito mais.
Mas vejamos a sua apresentação:
“Founded in England in 1972, we have formed and contributed to important private and institutional collections. Items of note which we have placed include a unique copy of Abbot’s Natural History of the Rarer Lepidopterous Insects of Georgia with plates on vellum, an extremely rare extra-illustrated large paper Spanish edition of Blaeu’s Atlas Mayor, Curtis' North American Indian, a copy of the Federalist in boards, the first separate printing of the Bill of Rights, and a large paper issue of Redouté Les Roses with the plates in two states.
We are renowned for our extensive print inventory which is unsurpassed in quality. The Sporting collection recently incorporates the complete print stock of Ackermann & Son of London, established in 1783.
We are members of the Antiquarian Booksellers Association of America, where Mr. Heald has served on the Board of Governors as Treasurer, Security Chairperson, and as Chairman of the New York Antiquarian Book Fair. We are members of the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers, and the American Historical Print Collectors Society. Mr. Heald is a member of the Grolier Club, and the American Antiquarian Society.”
“Books, prints and maps are shown by appointment only. Please contact us to schedule an appointment. – email@example.com”
Na secção Voyages & Travel encontrei este exemplar que, para além de nos revelar todo o fascínio do Oriente, reúne todas as condições para ser uma obra de elevada qualidade: excelente encadernação apesar de ser contemporânea (que não de época), belas ilustrações – aguarelas e guaches – e em óptimo estado de conservação (apenas com o “pequeno senão” do seu preço!)
CHINA, Canton School.
[Album of exceptional watercolours of members of the Chinese court, various occupations, landscape views, Chinese junks and botanical and ornithological subjects]
[Canton: circa 1830]. Small 4to. (9 3/4 x 7 7/8 inches). 61 watercolour and gouache drawings, on J. Whatman wove paper watermarked 1829, interleaved with blanks. The first watercolour, within an elaborate border, featuring a seated woman holding a sheet of paper inscribed G. Jackson, 1836.
Contemporary dark purple straight grained morocco, covers bordered in gilt and blind with a central device in gilt, spine wide flat bands in four compartments, tooled in gilt, Liverpool bookseller's ticket on the front pastedown (Richard Taylor), glazed yellow endpapers, gilt edges
Provenance: G. Jackson (inscription dated 1836 on tablet on first image)
A lovely album of pre-Opium Wars Chinese export watercolors of the highest quality.
Beginning in the late 18th century, centered on the treaty port of Canton, there existed a thriving trade in watercolours executed by local Chinese artists and sold to the western merchants and travellers. The best known result of this trade is William Mason's Costume of China, first published in London in 1800, which is illustrated with 60 hand-coloured aquatints adapted from a series of original watercolours by Pu-Qua of Canton.
Importantly, the watercolours in the present album are of a uniformly higher quality than usually encountered, including vivid colouring and the use of gold. The subjects include members of the court and occupations (15), junks and ships (7), landscapes (7) and natural history subjects including flowers, birds and insects (32). Collections of Chinese export watercolors were routinely executed on less expensive pith paper, whereas the present watercolours are on high quality wove paper. The album represents a more prestigious style of export watercolor paintings specifically meant for wealthy Europeans. These are Chinese watercolors of the highest quality, designed and executed to the highest standards.
Chinese export watercolours occupy "a space which is neither wholly Chinese nor wholly European, but which can, by the nature of the compromises it makes, tell us a lot about how one culture saw the other in the age before photography" (Clunas, p. 11).
Crossman, The China Trade (Princeton: 1972); Clunas, Chinese Export Watercolours (London: 1984).
Espero que esta obra seja do vosso agrado, pelo menos tanto como eu gostei da vos apresentar.