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Penka Rare Books

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[POLISH UNOFFICIAL ART – CONCEPTUALISM – FEMINISM] Wieza Eiffel’a: Obecnosc wysokosci. Galeria adres, Lódz . kwiecien 1972 [The Eiffel Tower: the presence of height. Adres gallery, Lodz. April 1972].

Partum, Ewa. Lodz: galeria adres, 1972. Leporello measuring 28 x 16.5 cm closed, folded three times to create four panels, printed to rectos and versos. With four full-page photograph and a portrait of the author. Good or better; last page with trace of glue and paper. Scarce pamphlet accompanying Partum's work "Wieza Eiffla. Obecnosc wysokosci" (The Eiffel Tower. The presence of height), which was also the very first exhibition at the small "adres" gallery run by Partum. The work comprises three balls of string which cumulatively measures 306 meters, or the height of the Eiffel Tower. A poetic text accompanying the work in Polish and French translation is printed alongside the reproductions, with a short biography of Partum and her portrait. Partum ran the "adres gallery" as a small independent exhibition space in Lódz from 1972 to 1977, collaborating with figures such as Krzysztof Wodiczko, Andrzej Dluzniewski, Zbigniew Warpechowski, Andrzej Kostolowski, John Cage, Ben Vautier, Dick Higgins, Richard Kostelanetz, and Klaus Groh, and attempting to bridge the divide between East and West. In 2019, an exhibition in Warsaw attempted to reconstruct its activities "as a site that stoked the development of Conceptual Art and reflection on the art institution, and as a major mail art centre" (ewa partum. my gallery is an idea). Partum's work was featured in an exhibition at MOCA in Los Angeles in 2008 ("WACK! Art and feminist revolution") and at the exhibition "re.act.feminism" at the Akademie der Künste in Berlin in 2009. One of 300 copies printed. All publications by the galeria adres are scarce. As of January 2024, not in KVK, OCLC.
  • $846
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[FIRST UKRAINIAN TRANSLATION OF POE’S RAVEN] Poe, Edgar Allan, et al, and Pavlo A. Hrabovs’kyi (translator)

Poe, Edgar Allan, et al, and Pavlo A. Hrabovs'kyi (translator) L'viv: Nakladom Redaktsyi "Zori", 1897. Small octavo (15.3 x 11.3 cm). Original side-stapled printed wrappers on pink stock; 116 pp. Very good; an uncut and unopened copy. Scarce volume of translations of American, English, European, and Slavic poetry, including the first Ukrainian translation of E. A. Poe's "The Raven" and Verlaine's "Chanson d'automne." Other English-speaking authors include Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Wordsworth, Elizabeth Browning, Felicia Hemans, Tennison, Shelley and others. The translations also include works by Ada Negri, Baudelaire, Goethe, Uhland, Lenau, Chavchavadze and Baratashvili, Rafael Patkanyan, as well as various Hungarian, South Slavic, and Russian authors. The author's preface notes that in some translations he only kept the motif and tone of the original, but created his own Ukrainian equivalent. "May the reader excuse me, if at times my Ukrainian bandura sang in foreign lands not in the native way, but if it blared with the unsteady sound of midnight" (preface). The editor and translator was Pavlo Hrabovsky (Hrabovs'kyi, 1864-1902), a poet, translator, journalist and revolutionary from Kharkiv region. He spent much of his life in forced exile for his political agitation, including during the period when the present anthology was prepared. "For his radical populist involvement, he was expelled from the Kharkiv Theological Seminary in 1882 and forced to live in Pushkarne under police surveillance. He was imprisoned and then exiled to Irkutsk gubernia in Siberia in 1886. In 1889, in Irkutsk, he was again imprisoned; released in 1893, he was forced to live in Viliuisk, Yakutsk (from 1897), and Tobolsk (from 1899), where he died of a pulmonary illness. Hrabovsky corresponded from prison with Galicia's Ukrainians, who published his poetry and literary criticism in the journal Pravda, Zoria (Lviv), Dzvinok, Narod, Zhytie i slovo, and Literaturno-naukovyi vistnyk. As a poet, he rejected art for art's sake and wrote mainly social, political, and patriotic verse; he sought out consonant motifs in the works of many Russian, European, and American poets he translated" (Internet Encyclopedia of Ukraine, article by Ivan Koshelivets). As of January 2024, KVK, OCLC show only one copy worldwide, at Harvard.
  • $2,818
  • $2,818
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[EARLY FUTURIST EXHIBITION CATALOG] Arturo Ciacelli. Futurist Utställning [Futurist Exhibition]. Wrapper note: Salong Joël. Hamngatan 16, Stockholm, 28 mars-15 april 1913.

Ciacelli, Arturo. Stockholm: Stellan Ståls boktryckeri, 1913. Small octavo (15.6 x 11.8 cm). Original staple-stitched printed wrappers on orange stock; 20, [1] pp. With six full-page illustrations. Some fading and minor wear to wrappers; else very good. Italian Futurist art was first shown in Europe in February 1912, at an exhibition in Paris followed by others in London, Berlin, and Brussels that same year. The next exhibition under the banner of Futurism was Ciacelli's one man show in Stockholm. The artist had first exhibited at the Salon des Refusés in Rome in 1905 – along with Balla, Boccioni, and Severini – but after marrying Elsa Ström he had shifted his center of activity to Scandinavia. In 1913, he sold his earlier works and fully embraced Futurism: "In his next show in early 1913, Ciacelli launched himself as a Futurist. The exhibition featured a rather eclectic collection of works, twenty-one paintings [.] and a series of twenty drawings illustrating Nietzsche’s Also sprach Zarathustra. [.] The show went on tour in Scandinavia and was presented at Salon Joêl in Stockholm (28 March-15 April), at the Gamla Högskolan in Göteborg (24 April–10 May) and Blomqvist Kunsthandel in Oslo (May)" (Öhrner, p. 111). The reception by the Italian Futurists was mixed, but Ciacelli was praised, among others, by Delaunay and Apollinaire, and he launched a tireless campaign to popularize Futurism and other European avant-garde tendencies, as well as fostering international connections, via his gallery in Stockholm and the "Blue Grotto" nightclub. The catalog lists the 21 paintings shown, along with prices in Swedish Crowns, and a list of twenty illustrations for Nietzsche's "Thus Spake Zarathustra." The works are priced between 150 and 2000 SEK. See: Annika Öhrner, "Claiming Futurism: Arturo Ciacelli in Scandinavia" (International Yearbook of Futurism Studies 8, 2018), pp. 107-128. Rare; as of January 2024, KVK, OCLC show the copy at Stockholm and one copy in North America.
  • $846
book (2)

[SLOVAK AVANT-GARDE, PROLETARIAN POETRY] Ciern na palete: verse [Black on the palette: verses].

Kral, Frano and Josef Zamazal (design). Breclav: Stan (printed by Vladimir Chlanda), 1930. Small octavo (17.5 x 11.8 cm). Original pictorial wrappers; Publisher's typographically designed self-wrappers; 36, [3] pp. About very good; minor wear to wrappers. Scarce first volume of poems by the Slovak avant-garde poet Frano Kral, published as vol. 7 of Edícia Stan, a publication series by the eponymous publisher and journal of the arts, literature, and social thought published in South Moravia, on the border with Austria and Slovakia. Kral (1903-1955) was born in Barton, Ohio but returned to his parents' native Slovakia – then part of Austro-Hungary – as a small child. Suffering from lung disease much of his life, he worked as a teacher in various smaller towns, before settling in Bratislava in 1931. In his first book of poems, he took a stand as a leftist poet whose work was dominated by themes such as emigration, economic crisis, social conflict, and the rise of Fascism in Europe. The typography, in combination with small round photographs, of the wrapper and the first three pages shows a clear orientation toward the international avant-garde, even though the book appeared in a small provincial publishing venture. In later years, Kral would embrace Socialist Realism. During World War II, he was part of the Slovak communist underground; after the regime change, he became a leading socialist politician and given the title of "National Artist" (1953).

As of January 2024, KVK, OCLC show two holdings outside the Czech Republic, at Iowa and Cleveland.
  • $507
[POLISH PERFORMANCE ART] Galeria 80 "akademia ruchu" [Gallery 80 "Academy of Movement"].

[POLISH PERFORMANCE ART] Galeria 80 “akademia ruchu” [Gallery 80 “Academy of Movement”].

Warsaw: Studenckie Centrum Środowisk Artystycznych "Dziekanka", ASP, [1977]. Large octavo (26 x 17.7 cm). Original staple-stitched photo-illustrated wrappers; [16] pp., including 19 photographs, introductory text, and a chronology of the group. Good or better; light wear and chipping to lower right corner and edge of front wrapper. A richly-illustrated catalogue of the activities of “akademia ruchu,” an experimental performance group that was a pioneer in public performance in Poland. Founded by Wojciech Krukowski in 1973, the group’s activities combined visual arts, film, and performance to comment on the most basic social situations such as riding the bus or standing in a queue, working with gestures, printed word, or conversation fragments to defamiliarize everyday life. The catalog includes a list of fifteen members of the group, critical articles by art historians Marcin Giżycki and Jolanta Rebakowska, and a chronology of the group’s activities, including numerous international performances and awards in Germany, Italy, Portugal, and Venezuela among others. The catalog also includes documentation of specific performances, of which there were over 200 in the 1970s. A graduate of the art history department of Warsaw University, Wojciech Krukowski was a major figure in the independent culture movement. In 1975 he became one of the initiators of Dziekanka Student Art Center (Pracownia Dziekanka) which he directed until 1979. This role led to his collaboration with Solidarność, Poland’s first independent trade union. In 1980 he was authorized by Lech Walesa to negotiate with the Polish government about the independent status of student cultural organizations, founding the Solidarity Cultural Center at the “Cora” clothing production plant, another attempt at bringing art closer to life. The Museum of Modern art in Warsaw holds a substantial collection of video documentation of Akademia ruchu. As of December 2023, not in KVK, OCLC.
  • $338