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Alfons Mucha (1860-1939)

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For me Mucha was a great way to start appreciating art. Together with Henri de Toulouse Lautrec ( roughly from the same period), Alfons Mucha was the artist i appreciated the most in my mid teenage period. Accessible art and still a little bit more avant garde than the Impressionist painters who were widely appreciated in those days. Mucha was THE Art Nouveau artist and together with some French and Belgian artist was the top in Art Nouveau art. The art of Alfons Mucha is highly recognizable. The use of women models who look straight at you is one of his trademarks.

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Since for me personally a lot has changed. From the accessible Art Nouveau by Mucha i made a “travel” through art history which resulted in appreciating Minimal and conceptual art. Still Mucha has a lot of quality and for those seeking a nice work by an Art Nouveau , please include the works by Mucha, since there are many extremely nice prints now available since this artist is copyright free. For those looking for some publications on Mucha , visit www.ftn-books.com

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Jan Gregoor (1914-1982)

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Jan Gregoor, became “famous” in the Netherlands for his crayon works, but for me it is not his art that makes the artist attractive. It is typical for the decades he lived and worked in, but what struck me most about Gregoor was the EXCELLENT exhibition poster that was made by the van Abbemuseum for an exhibition on the artist and designed by Cornet. It has the simplicity of the greatest of 60’s designs and for me personally i think this is absolutely one of the most splendid of all van Abbemuseum posters ( available at www.ftn-books.com).

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I just told that i am not that fond of Gregoor, but still he has made some excellent prints., which are worthwile to search for.

gregoor shop

 

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Saul Steinberg (1914-1999)

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….and now for the other Steinberg…SAUL STEINBERG.

First i must say that writing a blog on Steinberg, can not do justice to the excellent site , which the Steinberg foundation has constructed on the life, times and art of Saul Steinberg. You can visit the site at : http://saulsteinbergfoundation.org

But some personal notes on the artist. Saul Steinberg is a very well known artist in Europe. He had his exhibitions at the Maeght galleries in the Sixties and Seventies and both the Stedelijk Museum and the Boymans van Beuningen museum in the Netherlands organized exhibitions on the artist. In the beginning i always had considered Steinberg to be an illustrator and not the artist he later became to me. Later i realized to look at his art in a way that his drawings were meant to be seen. A citation from his site makes this clear :

Saul Steinberg defined drawing as “a way of reasoning on paper,” and he remained committed to the act of drawing. Throughout his long career, he used drawing to think about the semantics of art, reconfiguring stylistic signs into a new language suited to the fabricated temper of modern life. Sometimes with affection, sometimes with irony, but always with virtuoso mastery, Saul Steinberg peeled back the carefully wrought masks of 20th-century civilization.

This is an artist to be discovered by a far larger audience. At this moment i think he is the lesser of both Steinberg’s  i recently wrote a blog on, but perhaps time will prove me wrong and i will think of his art just the way around in a few years. www.ftn-books.com has some nice and rare Saul Steinberg publications available.

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New site for FTN books and discount code

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It was a necessary step to make the site more accessible, so i changed the lay-out made it much more clear for all visitors to find their way among the 8000+ items that are for sale at www.ftn-books.com.

The result a clean and pleasing site in a blue and creme color scheme. Pleasing to the eye, with a great search engine to find those titltes you are looking for . Please take a look at www.ftn-books.com and when you order use the discount code: FTNnew (10% discount on all items), which is valid until the 6th of February 2019.

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Gianfredo Camesi (1940)

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A Swiss born artist who had at the age of 30 a solo exhibition in 1970 in the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam. Catalogue and poster were designed by Wim Crouwel.

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Camesi painter/sculptor who operates as an avant garde artist pur sang deserved at that time a presentation in the Stedelijk Museum. His works intrigue and it is a pity that he has not become as famous as some of the others from his generation. Still the catalogue published with the exhibition in the Stedelijk Museum is one of the very best designed one from the early Seventies and the art by Camesi within it is still fresh and contemporary and of course available at www.ftn-books.com

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Cuban posters / Wim Crouwel 1971

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It is 1959 and the end of the Cuban Revolution is celebrated in the town of Havana. Since the beginning of the revolution many posters pro and contra have been published in Cuba and many of them have were great examples of political propaganda. These posters were recognized by the curators of the Stedelijk Museum as being important enough to present them in a special exhibition on Cuban posters. Wim Crouwel was asked to design the catalogue with this exhibition 1971, only 12 years after the end of the revolution .

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Because of the power of these posters he decided to use one of the most iconic on the cover. Simplicity all the way. Just the power of the South America shaped fist with simple typography made this one of my favorite catalogues in the seventies of the Stedelijk Museum. Of course it is available at www.ftn-books.com together with many other Stedelijk Museum / Crouwel designed catalogues

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Francis Bacon and the Hugh Lane gallery

 

photograph published with the permission of Peter Stark / copyright Peter Stark
photograph published with the permission of Peter Stark / copyright Peter Stark

At the time the Gemeentemuseum organized the Francis Bacon exhibition I contacted a colleague at the Hugh Lane gallery ( http://www.hughlane.ie) for purchasing their excellent Bacon posters to resell them in the shop of the Gemeentemuseum Den Haag. (The Hugh Lane is also the place where the original Bacon studio was rebuilt and permanently shown to the public). After the initial purchase of Bacon material we kept in contact and when i started my own shop on the internet i started reselling these posters on eBay and in my FTN shop. I bought enough of them , but forgot to list them on eBay in the last 10 years and lost track of them. Now i found them again , stacked away, but in perfect condition and can offer them again for sale. Please look for them and other Bacon material at www.ftn-books.com and search for Bacon.

 

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Japanese posters ( 1977 )…catalogue by Wim Crouwel

The Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam has a history with posters and specially the posters from Japan were presented on multiple occasions within exhibitions on the subject. In 1977 , the “Japanse Poster” exhibition catalogue was designed by Wim Crouwel, who designed a very special catalogue for the exhibition . The catalogue is one of the best from the seventies and instead of the typical Crouwel typography

on the cover there are Japanese letters drawing your attention. Red lettering on a silver background let this one stand out from the rest.

Stedelijk Museum#JAPANSE AFFICHES# Crouwel, 1977, NM

This catalogue was published with number 617 within the series of published Stedelijk Museum catalogues.

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Minimal Art by Judd, Andre and LeWitt

I chose these 3 artists to tell you something on Minimal Art in the Netherlands. These 3 artists were the first to be invited to have an exhibition on Minimal Art in 1968,. The exhibition was curated by Enno Develing and the catalogue published with this exhibition has become one of the rarest of dutch museum catalogues from the last half century. I am fortunate to still have it available in PDF, because this one was so rare i decided, at the time i was working as a bookseller/publsher for the Haags Gemeentemuseum to buy one to turn it into PDF files and so making it available for collectors and visitors. Thanks to Ap Gewald, who had the original copy and lent it to me for this purpose, this project became possible. A good decision, because it has become a very hard to find catalogue and because of its importance it is still available for students and collectors alike in PDF.

For all customers ordering in the next week, i make this catalogue available on request and sent it by Wetransfer. But because of this long time relation of these 3 artists, all three of them have made special editions with the museum shop. Sol LeWitt made painted tiles, Carl Andre small copper plates in editions of 1/1 and Donald Judd, made brightly colored furniture for the bookshop in the early nineties. Of course these products are all completely sold out, but what is still available, but is increasingly becoming more scarce every day, is the Museum publications and artist books by these artists. Specially Sol LeWitt works are harder to find each

 

month, but i am proud to have one of the 1972 editions by Sol LeWitt in my inventory. It is the Macerata edition of 8 original /signed silkscreens by Sol LeWiit in its original white plastic container.

https://ftnbooks.myshopify.com/admin/products/448412805

And because we have to celebrate a milestone on Facebook there is of course a discount code (valid for only 2 days) , which gives a 10% discount : FBminimal10

Please take a look at the many beautiful Minimal Art books that are available at:

www.ftn-books.com

lewitt-2015

 

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Jan Bons and Gerrit Rietveld

First of all this great RIETVELD poster is sold to Japan and it was the only one available at this moment, but i wanted to make sure my readers know of its existence. This is such a powerful design by Jan Bons with the Z of the ZigZag chair by Rietveld. If ever there is a Stedelijk Museum poster to be reissued/reprinted again…i will vote for this one. For some other nice Stedelijk Museum posters visit www.ftn-books.com

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