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CR. [308.1 – .21] El Negro

El Negro

 1983

CR. [308.1 – .21] El Negro

Images 24 leaves consisting of 19 original lithographs, 1 half-title and 1 title page, and 3 sheets of text in 3 sheet sizes; single sheets measure 15 x 15 in. (38.1 x 38.1 cm); double sheets folded once measure 15 x 25 3/4 (38.1 x 65.4 cm); triple sheets folded twice measure 15 x 37 3/4 in. (38.1 x 95.9 cm). The image used for the front and back endleaves is identical and is printed on sheets measuring 15 x 25 3/4 in. (38.1 x 65.4 cm) and 15 x 29 in. (38.1 x 73.7 cm) respectively. The paper is white Tyler Graphics Limited (TGL) handmade. The lithographs are paired with lines from Rafael Alberti's poem "Negro Motherwell" (spring 1980). The book includes a preface by Jack D. Flam following the title page. Housing The pages of the book are bound into a natural buckram-covered clamshell box fabricated by Walden/Lang Company, New York. The box measures 17 x 16 5/8 x 2 1/4 in. (43.2 x 42.2 x 5.7 cm). The pages are held in place between buckram-covered metal bars with four screw post fasteners that allow the pages to be removed for exhibition. The buckram is scored in flaps above the screws. The title "El Negro" is stamped on the front cover in black. The spine of the book is stamped "'El Negro' Alberti·Motherwell/Tyler Graphics Ltd." and includes the publisher's logo. Typeface Bodoni Bold: typography by Antony Drobinski and Roberta Savage, Emsworth Studios, New York; typesetting by Stamford Typesetting Corporation, Stamford Connecticut

Paper

White TGL handmade bound in natural buckram-covered clamshell box

Signature

Signed “Robert Motherwell” in black ink lower left on colophon page.

Inscriptions

Numbered in black ink lower left on colophon page

Edition

51

Proofs

1 archive proof
10 AP, numbered I/X-X/X
1 CP
3 HC
3 presentation proofs
2 PP
1 RTP
1 TP

Publisher

Tyler Graphics Ltd., Bedford Village, New York

Printer

Roger Campbell, Lee Funderburg and Kenneth Tyler, Tyler Graphics Ltd.

Collaborators

Transfer of artist’s prepared images to aluminum plates by Funderburg; papermaking by Steve Reeves and Tom Strianese

Production Sequence

Collation
1 single foldout front endleaf with lithograph
1 page with half-title text: "EL NEGRO"
1 page with title text EL NEGRO/LITHOGRAPHS BY/ROBERT MOTHERWELL/POEM BY/RAFAEL ALBERTI/PUBLISHED BY/TYLER GRAPHICS LTD./1983 recto; lithograph (Negro) verso
1 single foldout page of text recto; lithograph (Mourning) verso
1 single foldout page of text recto; text verso
1 page with lithograph (Night Arrived) recto; text verso
1 double fold dout page with lithograph (Elegy Black Black) recto; text verso
1 page with lithograph (Black Banners) recto; text verso
1 single foldout page with lithograph (Black of the Echo) recto; text verso
1 page with lithograph (Eternal Black) recto; text verso
1 double foldout page with lithograph (Black Wall of Spain) recto; text verso
1 single foldout page with lithograph (Airless Black) recto; text verso
1 double foldout page with lithograph (Black Concentrated) recto; text verso
1 page with lithograph (Black in Black) recto; text verso
1 double foldout page with lithograph (Forever Black) recto; text verso
1 page with lithograph (Invisible Stab) recto; text verso
1 single foldout page with lithograph (Black Lament) recto; text verso
1 double foldout page with lithograph (Black with No Way Out) recto; text verso
1 page with lithograph (Gypsy Curse) recto; text verso
1 page with lithograph (Black Undone by Tears) recto; text verso
1 double foldout page with lithograph (Through Black Emerge Purified) recto; text verso
1 double foldout Page with lithograph (Poor Spain) recto
1 colophon page
1 single foldout back endleaf with lithograph (same image as front end leaf)

Concordance

B 268-291; TGL 415 RM34-440 RM59

Comments

El Negro was Motherwell's second collaboration with Rafael Alberti and his first illustrated book with Kenneth Tyler. The book incorporates Alberti's poem "Negro Motherwell" (1980). The poet and the artist chose to use El Negro as the book's formal title. Motherwell has handwritten fragments of the text in many of the lithographic images, augmenting the strong declarative qualities of the poetry.

The imagery exhibits Motherwell's predisposition for area treatments and the tension produced by variations in edging. He emphasizes shape by ambiguously bending the straight edges of forms throughout the imagery in the book. The lithographs have a mural flatness evocative of many of the artist's early paintings and, with few exceptions, renounce the color, which appears as an accent or as the sole colored background for Gypsy Curse. The images appear on both sides of the page and their volume and bulk are deposited on the paper like shadows that flatten the ground on which they fall.

The space of the book expands and contracts in tandem with the advance and recession of the imagery. With its consecutive foldouts of varying horizontal lengths, the unusual format of the book takes the reader beyond the confines of the book's dimensions. As the pages unfold, this skillful design gives a unique dimensional unity to the book.

See Tyler Graphics Ltd.'s prospectus for El Negro, which provides technical details of the book's production and a preface written by Jack D. Flam.

Author

Rafael Alberti
translation by Vincente Lleó Cañal

Format

Illustrated book

Cover Size

17 x 16 5/8 in. (43.2 x 42.2 cm)

Images

24 leaves consisting of 19 original lithographs, 1 half-title and 1 title page, and 3 sheets of text in 3 sheet sizes; single sheets measure 15 x 15 in. (38.1 x 38.1 cm); double sheets folded once measure 15 x 25 3/4 in. (38.1 x 65.4 cm); triple sheets folded twice measure 15 x 37 3/4 in. (38.1 x 95.9 cm). The image used for the front and back endleaves is identical and is printed on sheets measuring 15 x 25 3/4 in. (38.1 x 65.4 cm) and 15 x 29 in. (38.1 x 73.7 cm) respectively. The paper is white Tyler Graphics Limited (TGL) handmade. The lithographs are paired with lines from Rafael Alberti's poem "Negro Motherwell" (spring 1980) The book includes a preface by Jack D. Flam following the title page.

Housing

The pages of the book are bound into a natural buckram-covered clamshell box fabricated by Walden/Lang Company, New York The box measures 17 x 16 5/8 x 2 1/4 in. (43.2 x 42.2 x 5.7 cm). The pages are held in place between buckram-covered metal bars with four screw post fasteners that allow the pages to be removed for exhibition. The buckram is scored in flaps above the screws. The title "EI Negro" is stamped on the front cover in black. The spine of the book is stamped " 'EI Negro' Alberti • Motherwell / Tyler Graphics Ltd." and includes the publisher's logo

Typeface

Bodoni Bold; typography by Antony Drobinski and Roberta Savage,
Emsworth Studios, New York; typesetting by Stamford Typesetting Corporation, Stamford, Connecticut

Collation

1 single foldout front endleaf with lithograph
1 page with half-title text: "EL NEGRO"
1 page with title text EL NEGRO / LITHOGRAPHS BY / ROBERT MOTHERWELL / POEM BY / RAFAEL ALBERTI / PUBLISHED BY / TYLER GRAPHICS LTD. / 1983 recto; lithograph
(Negro) verso
1 single foldout page of text recto; lithograph (Mourning) verso
1 single foldout page of text recto; text verso
1 page with lithograph (Night Arrived) recto; text verso
1 double foldout page with lithograph (Elegy Block Block) recto; text verso
1 page with lithograph (Block Bonners) recto; text verso
1 single foldout page with lithograph (Block of the Echo) recto; text verso
1 page with lithograph (Eternal Block) recto; text verso
1 double foldout page with lithograph (Block Wall of Spain) recto; text verso
1 single foldout page with lithograph (Airless Block) recto; text verso
1 double foldout page with lithograph (Block Concentrated) recto; text verso
1 page with lithograph (Block in Block) recto; text verso
1 double foldout page with lithograph (Forever Block) recto; text verso
1 page with lithograph (Invisible Stab) recto; text verso
1 single foldout page with lithograph (Block Lament) recto; text verso
1 double foldout page with lithograph (Block with No Way Out) recto; text verso
1 page with lithograph (Gypsy Curse) recto; text verso
1 page with lithograph (Block Undone by Tears) recto; text verso
1 double foldout page with lithograph (Through Block Emerge Purified) recto; text verso
1 double foldout page with lithograph (Poor Spain) recto
1 colophon page
1 single foldout back endleaf with lithograph (some image as front end leaf)

...

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