Friday, 8 August 2014

SOLD V&A Chintz + Toile de Jouy * 2 Full Size Books * £35 €50 $110 Shipping Included (Australia & New Zealand $120)

These 2 classic textile hardback books tell the story of Europe's long-standing addiction to Eastern printed textiles. The imported designs became lasting templates for embroiderers and so called Jacobean Crewel Work owes its origins to the cloths you can see the Chintz book.
Toile de Jouy is an image rich history book showing stages of manufacture such as this historic landscape showing the fields around the mills spread with drying cloths.
There are pattern books of designs as well as many full size images of the cloths themselves.
I particularly like this self-reflexive cloth showing the stages of its manufacture. Here you can see the fields spread again with cloths, but more cloths are hung from the eaves of the mill (bottom left) - what a sight that must have been!
Toile de Jouy began emulating cloths from the Indian subcontinent and, making use of well-developed printing technology, ended by becoming a unique story-telling artform: picturing recent archaeological discoveries in Italy; the documentation of Egypt by Napoleon's Grande Armée; the new buildings in Paris; and tales from the popular novels of the time. These are great historical documents. This book is in pristine condition.
Chintz is in excellent condition - however there is a repaired 3" clean cut to the reverse of the book jacket.
The dyers of Indian cloths had the special knowledge of mordant resist dyeing which meant that the bright colours adhered to cloth - and stayed there - unlike the dyed cloths in Europe where bright colours, lacking a properly mordant prepared base, faded quickly.
So the colours were a great pull - but I cannot help but think that the exotic plants and animals depicted also played a significant role in their attraction.
The designs are fractally complex and the more detail you see - the more detail again you see!
These designs were quickly taken up by embroiderers from the 16th century onwards and love of these designs has never really left us.

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