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Bellmer, Hans (Artist/Photographer) & Lichtenstein, Therese (Author). BEHIND CLOSED DOORS: THE ART OF HANS BELLMER. Berkeley, CA: University Of California Press, 2001. Hardcover. First Edition/First Printing. 255 pages. As New/As New.

Book-length account on subject. The single most important book on the photographic art of Hans Bellmer published in English thus far. The First Hardcover Edition. Precedes and should not be confused with all other subsequent editions, of which there are many. Published in a small and limited first print run as a hardcover original only by a University Press that sold out shortly after publication. The First Edition is now rare. A brilliant production by UC Berkeley: Regular-sized volume format. Silk cloth pictorial hard boards with titles on cover and spine, as issued. Art by Hans Bellmer. Text by Therese Lichtenstein, widely acknowledged as a global authority on Bellmer and the Surrealist Movement. ICP Exhibition Guide laid-in. Printed on pristine-white, archival stock paper in Canada to the highest standards. In glassine DJ, as issued. Published on the occasion of the landmark retrospective exhibition of the same name held at the International Center of Photography (ICP) New York in 2001. Presents Therese Lichtenstein's "Behind Closed Doors: The Art of Hans Bellmer". Perhaps the best book in the English language on the obsessional, "closed universe", and ultimately mad photographic art of Hans Bellmer. It seems to have taken a sane, completely rational female authority to iron him out for us, seventy years later. "Life-size, adolescent-girl dolls created by the German artist Hans Bellmer in the 1930's are the subject of Lichtenstein's highly original book. Disturbing and controversial, Bellmer's Dolls, with their fragmented bodies and eroticized poses, were just as shocking during Bellmer's time as they are today. Until now, there has been little available in English about Bellmer's Dolls, and Lichtenstein's book will be welcomed for its fresh interpretation of the artist's work and his place in European Modernism. Working during a time when Nazism was on the rise, Bellmer created dolls with fragmented bodies that could be dismantled and arranged in various configurations. Using a narrative format, he then photographed the dolls in a range of grotesque, sexual positions. The images he conveyed were of death and decay, abuse and longing, in stark contrast to Nazism's mystical and utopian Fascist world-view. Interprets Bellmer's complex expressions of eroticism as a protest against the Nazis, and also against his father, a repressive Nazi figure. At the same time, by hyperbolically flaunting a passive femininity in a theatrical manner, Bellmer's Dolls allow us to consider how cultural representations can affect the formation of identity and alternate possibilities" (Publisher's blurb). The prescient precursor of figures such as Pierre Molinier, on the one hand, and Robert Mapplethorpe, on the other, is explained and illuminated at last. An absolute "must-have" title for Hans Bellmer collectors. This title is a great photography book. Laid-in is a pristine copy of the International Center of Photography Exhibition Guide/Souvenir. This is one of very few copies of the First Hardcover Edition/First Printing still available online and is in especially fine condition: Clean, crisp, and bright, a pristine beauty. Please note: Copies available online are subsequent printings or have serious flaws. A rare copy thus. 80 black-and-white and color plates. Hans Bellmer's "La Poupee" ("The Doll") is widely regarded as one of the greatest photography books of the 20th century. One of the most remarkable artist/photographers of the 20th century. A fine copy. (SEE ALSO PIERRE MOLINIER AND GILLES BERQUET TITLES IN OUR CATALOG). ISBN 0520209842. $100.00

This item is available for purchase. This web page was most recently updated on October 17, 2019.