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LOUISE BOURGEOIS: COMPLETE BOOKS & PRINTS

Louise Bourgeois: Complete Books & Prints
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Cat. No. 931

Untitled, plate 6 of 10, from the illustrated book, Homely Girl, A Life, volume I

State/Variant:
Only state
Date:
1992
Illustrated Book:
Homely Girl, A Life, volumes I and II (View All)
Author:
Arthur Miller
Themes:
Nature
Techniques:
Drypoint
Description:
Drypoint
Support:
Smooth, wove paper
Dimensions:
plate: 7 3/8 x 5 3/8" (18.7 x 13.6 cm); page: 11 1/2 x 8 3/4" (29.2 x 22.2 cm)
Signature:
"Louise Bourgeois" center colophon (vol. I), blue ink.
Publisher:
Peter Blum Edition, New York
Printer:
Harlan & Weaver, New York
Edition:
100; plus 1 H.C. (numbered I/I) and a trade edition of 1200, plus a portfolio edition of 44
Impression:
"I/I" center colophon (vol. I), black ink, unknown hand.
Edition Information:
The sources for the illustrations in volume I of “Homely Girl” are drawings Bourgeois executed in 1991 in ballpoint pen. She reinterpreted these drawings in drypoint for the special edition, emphasizing the scratched quality of line that can be achieved with this technique. For the trade edition, she used photolithography to reproduce them (plate marks are faux). The sources for the illustrations in volume II are ophthalmological photographs of diseased eyes. Bourgeois reproduced them through photolithography.

The Arthur Miller text in volume I is repeated in volume II, but in volume II Bourgeois highlighted (in red) select passages referring to sight. The highlighted text appears in both the special edition and the trade edition of volume II.

The special edition of “Homely Girl” is quarter-bound in leather; the trade edition is entirely cloth bound. The trade edition is in MoMA’s Collection (Accession Numbers: 29.1993.A.x2 and 29.1993.B.x2) but it is not illustrated here.

The portfolio edition of “Homely Girl” includes the drypoint compositions from volume I; the compositions in volume II were not produced in a portfolio format.
Printer of Text:
The Stinehour Press, Lunenberg, VT
Background:
As explained in his published postscript to "Homely Girl, a Life," Peter Blum expressed to Bourgeois his wish to do a book at the time of their collaboration on the 1990 "Anatomy" portfolio (see Related Works in the Catalogue). For a long time, he had also been interested in publishing a book by American playwright Arthur Miller. While looking with Bourgeois at the book "Portraits," a collection of photographs by Miller's wife Inge Morath, which included a portrait of Bourgeois, Blum had the idea of bringing author and artist together. The publisher proposed a collaborative project, which appealed to both.

Miller visited Bourgeois's sculpture-filled Brooklyn studio and saw there, among many other works, several pieces in her series Cells, which concerns the senses of sight, hearing, and smell. Miller selected for the project an unpublished text whose subject is a romance between a girl and a blind man.
Artist’s Remarks:
"There has been an accident ... it was unpredictable. The image was so strong before that the accident comes as a surprise ... but the break is very real." (Quote cited in Wye, Deborah and Carol Smith. “The Prints of Louise Bourgeois.” New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 1994, p. 218.)
Former Cat. No.:
W & S 131
MoMA Credit Line:
Gift of the artist
MoMA Accession Number:
29.1993.A06.x1
This Work in Other Collections:
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
Minneapolis Institute of Art, MN
Baltimore Museum of Art, MD

Untitled, plate 6 of 10, from the illustrated book and portfolio, Homely Girl, A Life
1992

Source
1991

NOT IN MoMA'S COLLECTION Louise Bourgeois. Red ball point pen and ink on envelope drawing for print #6 for Homely Girl, A Life. 1991
NOT IN MoMA'S COLLECTION Red ball point pen and ink on envelope drawing...
Ink on envelope
1991

States

Published Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, plate 6 of 10, from the illustrated book, Homely Girl, A Life, volume I. 1992
Only state
1992
Published Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, plate 6 of 10, from the portfolio, Homely Girl, A Life. 1992
Only state
1992

Illustrated Book
1992

Louise Bourgeois. Homely Girl, A Life, volumes I and II. 1992
Homely Girl, A Life, volumes I and II
1992
More About This Work

Portfolio
1992

Louise Bourgeois. Homely Girl, A Life. 1992
Homely Girl, A Life
1992
More About This Work