From Chapter: Literature | Illustrated Books | Books with Orig. Graphics | Books costing more than EUR 1.000

Deml, Jakub and Josef Váchal. Hrad smrti [The castle of death. Illustrated with color woodcuts by Josef Váchal]. Prague: self-published, 1912. Quarto (23.6 × 18 cm). Contemporary gilt-ruled tan morocco binding with black inlays by Ant. Stelibský after a design by J. Solar; 51 pp. Eleven original color woodcuts by Váchal (frontispiece, title, nine leaves of plates with tissue guards). Signed by Deml to half title. 2.500,00 EUR
First edition of the expressionistic "found" prose poem by Jakub Deml (1878-1961), a most bizarre and enigmatic figure of Czech interwar literature. A Catholic priest from rural Moravia, Deml constantly seemed to rebel against the church, maintained close ties to various female muses, and was involved in public scandals, while producing an enormous body of written work, often published in small bibliophile editions. He is now considered an important figure of Czech modernist literature and writers such as Vitezslav Nezval saw Deml`s associative texts as similar to their own surrealist experiments. Deml`s friendship with the painter and printmaker Váchal - an equally complex and difficult person - was short and intense, but resulted in the present collaboration. Váchal`s ominous black and yellow woodcuts complement and complete Deml`s difficult dream-inspired prose poem about life after death. In a striking artistic morocco binding that manifests its own interpretation of the "castle of death" image. One of 500 copies printed. Sánnka 183. KVK, OCLC show copies at British Library, University of Chicago, Harvard, Toronto, and Yale only. Lacking the original pictorial wrappers. A few pages very lightly finger-marked, else very good.
Exhibitor: Penka Rare Books Phone: 030 20678736 Mobil: 0178 1694138
The title is up for the start of the antiquarian book fair.