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Czech Avant-Garde – Karel Teige – Photomontage


Prague: Václav Petr, 1928. Octavo (19.5 × 12.5 cm). Original wrappers with a photomontage by Karel Teige; 85, [3] pp. Wrappers dust-soiled and rubbed; a few sections loosened; a few leaves stained; else good.

First edition of this novel by Devětsil member Karel Konrád. Teige's photomontage on the cover already visualizes and interprets the story, although the image only becomes legible once the narrative is known. At first it seems to be an accumulation of geometric figures on which a female nude sits, but gradually a record becomes visible. The main character of the novel does not fall in love with a sculpture or a relief, as was usual in the stories before the invention of the gramophone, but with the voice of the singer Dinah, whom he hears on the record. To loosely paraphrase Walter Benjamin: both the photomontage and the narrative are about love in the age of technical reproducibility.

Teige was not only responsible for the cover design, but also for the typography.

In addition to the present edition, 25 copies were printed on hand-made paper.

Srp 239; Toman 9.3.1; Vloemans 125; Primus 284.

As of September 2022, OCLC locates one holding in North American institutions.

Book ID: 52345

Price: $125.00