44; plus 10 A.P., 6 P.P., 2 SOLO Press Impressions, 2 for Peter Blum, 1 B.A.T
"III/X" left lower margin, pencil, unknown hand.
The entire edition size was not listed on the publisher's colophon or in the cataloguing of this portfolio in Wye and Smith, "The Prints of Louise Bourgeois," 1994, p. 166. The full edition seen here was confirmed by Harlan & Weaver, New York.
The 10 A.P. impressions are numbered in Roman numerals. The 6 P.P. impressions are numbered in Arabic numerals, as is the single B.A.T. impression. The 2 SOLO Press Impressions are inscribed "SPI 1" and "SPI 2." The inscriptions and numbering on the 2 impressions for Peter Blum are unknown.
There is 1 known impression of the only state, outside the edition.
In 1988 Peter Blum, as a representative of "Parkett" magazine, discussed doing a multiple with Bourgeois. He also explored with her the idea of doing a print project with Peter Blum Edition. When they began to do prints together in 1989, Blum worked with Judith Solodkin, of SOLO Impression, as supervisor of printing, since Solodkin already had a friendly relationship with Bourgeois. Since SOLO Impression did not focus on intaglio printing, Solodkin made arrangements with Harlan & Weaver. Occasionally, Bourgeois went to the SOLO Impression workshop to inspect proofs brought over from Harlan & Weaver. Initially, she had no particular project in mind and began working in drypoint directly on copper plates using a variety of images.
The title was selected after the theme of anatomy became evident in a number of images the artist created. The published portfolio has no table for plates; nor does it identify the plates by number or title. During preparations for the 1994 catalogue raisonné, however, Bourgeois arranged the plates in the order she preferred, with imagery proceeding generally from head to foot. She also assigned titles at that time.
"This is 'The Talker'... wrapped up to stop from talking. It is an ideal portrait... I would like to be able to be this person. Her wish is to be tongue-tied. She always says too much.
"She has difficulty in monitoring the throat... the intake of food and the outtake of words. But this is a big price to pay... to put yourself in prison like this."
Bourgeois wrote on a photocopy of this image: "You are not going to make me talk.... You have an urge to talk, why don't you let go? Because I would die of it.... Reaction formation to the urge to talk... to eat... to cough." (Quotes cited in Wye, Deborah and Carol Smith. "The Prints of Louise Bourgeois." New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 1994, p. 173)
Inscribed on the verso of the source drawing: "For Jerry / The Twist / Skain of Wool [sic] / Tight person / person affolee / Louise Bourgeois / LB 89."
The prints in this portfolio can be shown as a group or individually. There is no required sequence.
Former Cat. No.:
W & S 107
MoMA Credit Line:
Gift of the artist
MoMA Accession Number:
This Work in Other Collections:
The Baltimore Museum of Art, MD Centro Cultural / Arte Contemporaneo, Mexico City Des Moines Art Center, Iowa The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs, The New York Public Library The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (published impression and an impression outside the edition titled "Ropeman") Philadelphia Museum of Art
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