Ulysses for auction

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Ulysses for auction

1ChrisG1
Mayo 24, 1:26pm

This is out of my wheelhouse, but I thought it would be of interest to others here:

https://www.liveauctioneers.com/item/104172977_after-henri-matisse-ulysses-by-ja...

2laotzu225
Mayo 24, 7:20pm

The current bid price ($1,300) is cheap for this book which I believe is the most expensive LEC (with Picasso's Lysistrata close behind.
It's been said that Matisse never read the book.
I think there is a longstanding eBay listing at 50K US.
I'm glad it isn't one of the LECs I've wanted.

3ChrisG1
Mayo 24, 8:51pm

>2 laotzu225: Even the $2-3000 estimate seems low, from what I've seen. The condition description, however, sounds closer to VG than Fine. And while it mentions the slipcase, it doesn't picture it.

4astropi
Mayo 24, 10:22pm

One thing I've always hated about auction houses like this, which is thankfully not present in eBay, is the buyer's premium. In this case, it's 30 freakin' percent! So if the book sells for $2500, the buyer will actually be paying $3250. Forget that.

5booksforreading
Editado: Mayo 25, 11:26am

>4 astropi:
Plus tax, which on this amount will be substantial, or/and shipping of minimum $70-100.
Yes, people often do not take these extra charges into calculations.

6Jobasha
Mayo 25, 5:17pm

About 3 weeks ago I went to a local bookshop in Australia where LECs are rare and found a copy of Ulysses. It was listed for $4000 but the illustrations and signatures had been cut out!

7astropi
Editado: Mayo 25, 5:28pm

>6 Jobasha: Well, sounds like it's a $14 dollar book then :)
Did you tell the owner and what did they say?

8Addison372
Mayo 25, 6:45pm

>2 laotzu225: A small correction: Rather than the current bid, $1,300 is the minimum opening bid.

9Jobasha
Mayo 26, 1:59am

>7 astropi:

They did suggest that they might consider lower offers, but I didn't have the heart to offer them what I would have been willing to pay!

10Glacierman
Mayo 26, 1:08pm

>8 Addison372: As of a few minutes ago (5/26 11:06 AM Mtn Time, US), they have received one bid at the opening price ($1300).

Still out of my reach. But, I am no fan of either Ulysses or Picasso, so my interest is only one of curiosity.

11Django6924
Mayo 26, 3:06pm

>10 Glacierman:
I have the Heritage Press version of Lysistrata, and though I am a fan of Picasso; when I was in Paris I went to the Picasso Museum and was very impressed by the work there--which doesn't include his most famous paintings but has a large collection of his sculptures which were previously unknown to me. His illustrations for Macy are, frankly, uninspired.

Macy often talks about "the pure Greek line" but I don't see it in these illustrations--I wish he would have used Percival Goodman, whose illustrations for The Golden Ass are more my idea of what illustrations for Aristophanes should have been. Andre Durenceau is another artist who succeeded in his illustrations for the Peter Pauper Press The Clouds, and an outstanding job was done by (I never would have thought it!) John Austen for The Frogs; Picasso's illustrations fall very much short of their achievements.

A final disappointment in the LEC/HP Lysistrata is the translation. Read the version used in Oates & O'Neill's The Complete Greek Drama and you will be a lifelong fan of Aristophanes.

12Glacierman
Mayo 26, 6:41pm

>11 Django6924: Thanks for the referral. I shall pursue that as soon as may be. I, too, have the HP Lysistrata and agree that the Picasso illustrations are lesser works.

13kdweber
Mayo 26, 8:42pm

I liked the Picasso work in Lysistrata a lot better than the work Matisse did for Ulysses. For the record I own neither the LEC or HP editions, just the EP editions.

14ChrisG1
Jun 9, 12:44pm

I watched the auction out of curiosity & it sold for $2,200 - plus the 30% buyers premium & shipping, so closer to $3000 in the end.

15Django6924
Jun 9, 3:21pm

If it only had Matisse's signature, that seems a bit high. One in Fine condition a few years ago with only the artist's signature sold for $1500.

An interesting sidelight: for many years the LEC Ulysses was considered by Joyce experts, to have the most accurate text. The text used was that of the first Odyssey Press (Hamburg) 1934 revised edition, edited by Stuart Gilbert, who also wrote an introduction in consultation with Joyce; Macy didn't use the first authorized U.S. edition, the 1934 Random House edition which used the pirated Samuel Roth edition of 1929, which had many errors, so until the 1960s, the LEC was the preferred edition in the US, when Random House issued the novel using the Bodley Head 1960 edition which was based on the 1936 Bodley Head edition which was based on the Odyssey Press edition which had been used by the Limited Editions Club, but the 1936 Bodley edition had been proofed for errors by Joyce himself. Phew.

Of course the story doesn't end there: Walter Gabler edited what was to be The Definitive version which was published by Random House in 1984 4 years later, this edition was savaged by Joyce scholar John Kidd as not only reproducing many erors from the original, but adding hundreds of his own. Scholars remain divided, but Random House decide to drop the Gabler version and return to its 1961 version--which is for the most part the same as the Limited Editions Club version.

16ChrisG1
Jun 9, 4:25pm

>15 Django6924: There aren't many books for which I'd be willing to shell out that kind of money, and this isn't one of them. I've not read Ulysses - what edition would you recommend? My most valuable book right now is my 1st edition of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. I'm actually looking at selling my Oz collection to clear space and cash to pursue an LEC and other Fine Press collection.

17Django6924
Editado: Jun 9, 5:46pm

Well, if you are interested in reading what for now is considered the best text, I would probably recommend the hardcover Everyman's Library edition, which I have been told uses the 1960 Bodley Head edition, which is (for now at least) the one most often recommended. I have several Everyman's Library hardcover editions, and they are very well made. If you want something illustrated, the Folio Society published a facsimile of the 1926 Shakespeare & Company edition "with broken characters corrected and blemishes deleted" with curious (perhaps "bizarre" would be more apropos) illustrations by Mimmo Paladino. This can be found online for around $100 US, with cloth binding, such is mine, or in a goatskin-bound limited edition for $400 and up.

Easton Press also reprinted a facsimile of the Limited Editions Club edition, which you can find online for $200 and up.

Frankly, I'm not satisfied with any of the illustrated editions I've seen and if I didn'r already have 3 different versions, I'd take the Everyman's Library edition.

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