Ursus Rare Books

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Sat’amashoebis laboratoriis ek’sponatebis albomi.

RUSSIAN TOY CATALOG RUSSIAN TOY CATALOGUE. Sat'amashoebis laboratoriis ek'sponatebis albomi. [Album of Toy Laboratory Exhibits] . 80 pp. Illustrated with photographs and coloured diagrams. 180 x 276 mm, bound in original cloth with lettering and decoration on the front cover. Tbilisi: Zaria Vostoka, 1941. This album showcases toys and educational materials for kindergarten children produced by the Georgian scientific-research institute, and provides a unique insight into Soviet pedagogy. The work is particularly important as it promoted the toys which later became mainstream. The album is divided into four parts: "Educational Toys" (20 ill.), "Construction Toys" (6 ill.), "Folk Toys" (4 ill.) based on the famous Georgian folk tales, and "Outdoor Toys" (5 ill.). Each article is supplemented with the illustrations giving a valuable insight into the process of learning in Soviet Georgian kindergartens. The photos date back to the late 1930s. The album features 4 colored illustrations of the educational toys, "Triala", "Seqtorina", and "Tsibruti", as well as 11 black and white photographs depicting teachers using preschooler toys produced by the institute and kids playing games. As stated in the introduction, the edition was intended to provide kindergarten teachers with precise information on the use policy for toys, give assistance in defining pedagogical purposes of games, and represent achievements of the laboratory so that toy manufacturing companies could start the mass production. The album decoration is designed by the artist T. Kechkhoashvili. Some minor marginal stains, but overall in excellent condition. Not listed in OCLC. Scarce. One of 800 copies.
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The First Six Books of Euclid With Coloured Diagrams.

EUCLID.; Byrne, Oliver. EUCLID. The First Six Books of the Elements of Euclid, in which Coloured Diagrams and Symbols are used instead of Letters for the Greater Ease of Learners. By Oliver Byrne. xxix, [1], 268 pp. Profusely illustrated throughout with colour-printed diagrams. Small 4to., 237 x 188 mm, bound in original publisher's drab cloth, edges untrimmed. In half morocco protective box. London: [Charles Whittingham for] William Pickering, 1847. First and Only Edition of Byrne's Euclid, surely one of the most remarkable Victorian books. These Mondrian-like designs of bold, primary colours are printed in faultless register, and the striking composition on the page is unique in book-making. Ruari McLean describes it as "one of the oddest and most beautiful books of the whole century." Both McLean and Joan Friedman agree that it is Whittingham's "triumph." In describing the complicated printing processes, Friedman writes: "Although the areas of colour were all flat tones without any subtleties, it was absolutely necessary that register -- the proper positioning of the blocks for successive printings -- be perfect, so that the angles and lines meet each other at the proper places. Whittingham achieved this and at the same time designed a page of great elegance and balance." Oliver Byrne devised this edition of Euclid as a completely new system for learning geometry. He determined that by using colours (instead of letters) to indicate angles and lines for the various geometric figures, a student could comprehend Euclid's theories in less than a third of the time. This copy is bound in the plain remainder binding, which followed copies in both blue and red cloth. Foxing throughout, as is true in all copies; nevertheless an excellent unwashed, and fresh copy. From the library of Sir Robert Peel, with his bookplate. Friedman 43. McLean 70. Keyes, Pickering 53.
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Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror

AVEDON, Richard; Ashbery, John; WILLEM DE KOONING AVEDON, Richard. Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror. By John Ashbery. Containing an original signed photograph by Richard Avedon, and seven original, signed prints by: Elaine de Kooning, Willem de Kooning, Jim Dine, Jane Freilicher, Alex Katz, R.B. Kitaj and Larry Rivers. With a recording of Ashbery reading his poem. Prints and record housed in a stainless steel Hollywood movie canister with a convex mirror on the lid. San Francisco: Arion Press, 1984. Limited to 150 copies. John Ashbery's Pulitzer prize-winning poem is presented in this creative format by the Arion Press, text and illustrations laid in a stainless-steel "Hollywood" movie canister with convex mirror on the lid. The cover mirror provides a self-portrait of the beholder in the manner of Parmigianino's painted portrait with elongated features. Designed as a tribute to Ashbery, his poem is accompanied by signed prints from his artist-friends, united within a circular format. Each artist created images inspired by the poem; also included is a reproduction of the famous self-portrait by Parmigianino that originally inspired Ashbery to compose the poem. The prints are in various media, including lithography, etching, and woodcut. The text is printed in handset type radiating from a circular hub like spokes in a wheel. Along with the record of Ashbery reading the poem, there is a new foreword to the poem written by the poet. The foreword is signed by Ashbery and each original print bears the particular artist's signature. Fine copy. Now very scarce. Johnson, Artists' Books in the Modern Era 1870-2000, No173. Arion Press Check List 13.
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De la loi du Contraste Simultane des couleurs.

CHEVREUL, M.E. CHEVREUL, Michel-Eugène. De la loi du contraste simultané des couleurs, et de l'Assortiment des objets colorés. Two volumes. I: xv, [1], 735 pp., illustrated with two folding letterpress tables. II: [2], 2 pp. Illustrated with 40 engraved and lithographic plates on 22 ff., of which 13 folding; plates 2 and 3 printed in colour with fig. 12 on plate 2 hand-coloured; plate 4, the chromatic wheel, with over-slip; plates 5-31 and 34-39 stencil-coloured lithographs; plates 32-33 and 40 engraved; plate 33 hand-coloured; plus nine specimens of printing on different coloured papers. 8vo. (text), 215 x 135 mm, bound in new half morocco; and square 4to. (atlas), 290 x 245 mm, bound in publisher's original printed boards. Paris: Pitois-Levrault, 1839. The First Edition of this landmark treatise on colour, a work which has influenced artists from Seurat to Ellsworth Kelly and beyond. A professional chemist, Chevreul became Director of Dyeing at the Gobelins royal tapestry manufactory in 1824. Chevreul's "law of simultaneous contrast of colours" states that colours seen side by side will always appear to the eye "as dissimilar as possible, both in their optical composition and in the height of their tone." On this basis Chevreul proceeded to analyze the consequences and applications of colour contrast, i.e., the modifications of hue and tone occurring when juxtaposed colours are viewed at the same time, and he also established a precise nomenclature for colour relationships. An unusually fine copy of an extremely rare book, without the considerable foxing to the text volume as in almost all copies. In this copy plates 5-7, 8-10, 11-13, 14-16, 17-19, 20-2216 signed plates. 23-25, 26-28, 29-31, 33-39 are signed by Chevreul. OCLC lists only 3 copies in the US; SUNY Buffalo, NYPL and Hagley Museum. Norman 469. Birren Collection 143. En français dans le texte 237.
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Le Livre de Demain

ROCHAS, Albert de ROCHAS, Albert de. Le Livre de Demain. 44 separate fascicles comprising 424 pp. Illustrated with 11 original samples of rare old paper, 4 chromatic circles, 6 silhouettes by P. Konewka and 5 plates of which 3 are etchings and 2 are reproductions. 8vo., Loose as issued in the original cardboard folder, 225 x 140 mm. In a new blue half morocco folding box. Blois: Imprimerie Raoul Marchand, 1884. A tour de force of fin de siecle bookmaking printed on 44 different kinds of paper. The first three sections deal with the history of paper, ink, and colour, with the rest of the book being a selection of texts printed on various kinds of tinted paper, all decorated in a variety of colours. The paper samples illustrate the history of paper from papyrus to modern Japanese. Among the authors of the texts are Alphonse Daudet, Paul Verlaine and, Robert de Montesquiou. Our copy has the rare four-page promotional "Avis" printed on red paper within a gilt rule frame separately published bound-in at the end, and the equally scarce version Dissertation étymologique, historique et critique sur les diverses origines du mot Cocu, replacing the original text, printed on yellow paper 'jaune de Voiron'. The text of the Dissertation étymologique, historique et critique sur les diverses origines du mot Cocu in our copy covers 16 pages whereas Vicaire describes it as having 14 pages. One of an edition of 250 copies signed by both the author and the publisher, and marked "Author's copy". A rare and stunning book, especially in the fasciles as issued. The folder is worn, but the book itself is immaculate.
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Des couleurs et de leurs applications aux arts industriels à l’aide des cercles chromatiques

CHEVREUL, M.E CHEVREUL, M.E. Des Couleurs et de leurs Applications aux Arts Industriels à l'Aide des Cercles Chromatiques. 27 pp. Illustrated with 27 colour-printed steel engravings, 1 folded. Folio, bound in publisher's blue pebbled cloth. Paris: J.B. Ballière et fils, 1864. A separately published atlas of plates for colour matching, according to Chevreul's system of colour analysis, intended for the use of painters, textile designers, decorators, gardeners, etc., rather than scientists. Includes description of "chromochalcographie", Digeon's 4-color aquatint printing process (using separate plates for yellow, blue, red, black), with notes on the composition of the pigments. The plates originally appeared in Exposé d'un moyen de définir et de nommer les couleurs : d'après une méthode précise et expérimentale avec l'application de ce moyen a la définition et a la dénomination des couleurs d'un grand nombre de corps naturels et de produits artificiels, published 1861. The lettering of the plates has been modified to reflect the current publisher, Baillière, and plate printers, Lamoureux (pl. I-IV and the 10 "cercles chromatiques") and Ch. et A. Chardon (the 13 "gammes chromatiques")./ First plate, "Couleurs d'un spectre solaire", printed on heavy sheet, ca. 70 x 26 cm, and folded; all the other plates (colour wheels and progressive charts) were printed on thin paper and afterwards mounted. Covers a little sunfade, some minor scattered foxing. Overall very good