Benjamin Spademan Rare Books

G7, Books and ephemera, owned and annotated by renowned artists


Henri Matisse, Portrait of Florence Gould, 1948, Ink on paper, 35.5 ×  × 26.5 cm, Courtesy of Benjamin Spademan, Photo Antiquarian Photographer

For over a decade Benjamin Spademan Rare Books have been building a collection of books in which a wide range of visual artists have written personal presentations and also created an art work.

The earliest examples are from the 19th Century, with works by Constable Rossetti, Manet and Toulouse-Lautrec. The majority of the collection dates from the early to mid- 20th Century, when the interrelationship between art and books was at its apogee.

Artists such as Braque, Lipchitz, Zadkine, Picasso and Matisse created compositions, sometimes spontaneous and witty, sometimes elaborate and complex, on blank endpapers and flyleaves, and on half-titles and titles, incorporating elements of the printed text. The books in which they carried out such works range from 'Livres d'Artistes' in fine bindings, to monographs, exhibition catalogues, pamphlets and ephemera.