Emil Holárek’s fallen nymphet in Symbolist style, 1906
HOLÁREK, Emil: Pohádka o nadšení. Satirický žert [The Fairy Tale of Innocence. Satire]. Mit 33 ganzseitigen Illustrationen. Prag: Antonín Vítek, .
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Emil HOLÁREK; Jasoslav Kvapil: POHÁDKA O NADŠENÍ. SATIRICKÝ ŽERT [The Fairy Tale of Innocence. Satire]. With 33 full-paged illustrations after indian ink or pencil drawings. Prague: Antonín Vítek .
4mo. 35  pages. Original cardboard cover with embossed pale blue cover title and textile hasps.
First and only edition of this visually charming, yet as regards the story also pertinently disturbing bibliophile edition, with 33 full-paged illustrations after indian ink or pencil drawings by Czech symbolist painter and printmaker Emil Holárek (1867-1919) after a fairy tale by Jaroslav Kvapil.
Contents: The story is about a nymphet, who wears herself out between various institutions of state and society and the wickedness of their protagonists, finally ending up as a supposed culprit on the scaffold. The reproductions of Holáreks drawings are skilfully arranged by the Prague based printmaker Antonín Vítek by contrasting them with a ochre surface and ornamental frames and elegantly printed on cream machine-mould paper.
Holárek’s unique and to some extent irritating style is marked by „a sombre pessimism“. „He embodied a sense of sarcastic moralism in most of his series, reflecting on a deep tragic and romantic conception. Except for his connection to [Max] Klinger [whom he met when studying in Munich] he never allied with any school, nor did he have any followers.“ (Urban)
Condition: Apart from minor wearing at the cover and a few foxy stains inside, present is a very clean copy of this attractive bibliophile publication.
References: Otto M. Urban: Mysterious Distances. Symbolism and Art in the Bohemian Lans, 1880-1914. Catalogue on the occasion of the Exhibition in the Olomouc Museum of Art 201/15. Olomouc/Prague: 2014, pp. 106-09, with 7 illustrations, whereof 3 of comparable ink or pencil drawings; Thieme/Becker, vol. XVII, 326.