Max Ernst Volume V: Le Rire du coq, L'Ile de Pâques, L'Intérieur de la vue, La Clé des chants (Volume V: The Rooster's Laugh, Easter Island, The Interior of Sight, The Key to Songs) from Une Semaine de bonté (A Week of Kindness or the Seven Deadly Elements) 1933–34, published 1934

  • Not on view

A Week of Kindness (Une Semaine de bonté), is the most elaborate of Ernst’s inventive “collage novels.” Its 182 images were created by cutting up and reorganizing illustrations from nineteenth-century novels, scientific journals, and other sources. By printing these collages photomechanically, Ernst transformed them into the seamless images he desired. The surreal constructions, alternately dark and humorous in their subversion of bourgeois gentility, are rife with suggestions of repressed sexuality, violence, anti-militarism, and anticlericalism. Though originally planned as seven volumes, one for each day of the week, the last three “days” were combined into the fifth and final volume. Ernst released them consecutively, like popular serial stories.

Gallery label from Max Ernst: Beyond Painting, September 23, 2017-January 1, 2018.
Max Ernst
Volume V from a five volume serial novel with 182 line blocks after collages
page (each): 10 5/8 x 8 1/16" (27 x 20.5 cm)
Éditions Jeanne Bucher, Paris
Georges Duval, Paris
The Louis E. Stern Collection
Object number
© 2024 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris
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