painters-promo-redesign

The only good thing about stomach flu is this: it doesn’t last forever. It doesn’t even last very long but while it’s happening you’re ready to swear there’s nothing worse ever.

At any rate, it’s over now and so we spent a productive weekend uploading Iconic Painters posters to our Society6 store. This remains one of our favorite self-commissioned projects and we are always happy to hear from people interested in it. In addition to posters, you can now also buy stationery cards and iPhone cases. We’re planning on adding extra products because Society’s options are just too much fun not to play with (not that we’re convinced the world needs Georges de la Tour shower curtain) so if you’re interested in a particular kind of product, let us know and we’ll be happy to oblige.

Eventually, there will be also new painters coming but we can’t make promises as to the date.

Sorry, but we’re utterly incapacitated with stomach flu. Which is the worst. Seriously, the worst.

This time we’ll refrain from illustrating this fact and I’m sure you’ll appreciate this decision.

re-paris-17

As promised, today we want to share a few wonderful books we found in Paris. We spent a lot of time in museum bookstores and, as if that wasn’t enough to run out of money, we lived near a wonderful little bookstore specializing in art books and children books. I’m sure it was put there specifically to bankrupt us and it nearly did. But our collection grew again. In the post we will show you a few more French finds of our stay.

re-paris-05

As usual we enlarged our collection of Petit pop-up Panoramiques, which we keep showing you every time. In addition to Paris and Louvre, which we already had, this time we found the whole of France compressed into a small book of pop-ups. This one has more painterly, delicate illustrations than other books in the series, less humorous and more fashion-like, which we find refreshing. It also has so many places we’ve yet to see.

re-paris-06 re-paris-07 re-paris-08 re-paris-09

re-paris-01

In Musée d’Orsay’s bookstore we found a whimsical and quite charming comic Moderne Olympia, a story of Manet’s Olympia and her ambitions to become an actress. We haven’t read the whole story yet (our French might not be enough to get all the jokes, sadly) but the most lovely idea is that the story happens among famous pictures from the museum. Various scenes and characters are recreated from the paintings but, of course, in a different context. This is the kind of illustrative and intellectual fun that we always look for in art books and only sometimes manage to find.

re-paris-02 re-paris-03 re-paris-04And if one is not quite an art history expert the code at the last page is supposed to give you a list of all the paintings used in the story (we haven’t tested that yet but it’s certainly a good idea).

re-paris-10Now, I’ll admit at first sight I overlooked Romance. But once you give this book a few minutes of your time and take care to understand its concept, it’s quite breathtaking. It’s an entirely fresh experiment in storytelling, married with gorgeous illustrations and impressive technical savoir-faire (heh).

re-paris-14

The story expands from chapter to chapter and invites you to participate in telling it. Illustrations, words, even typography combine to add to the history, which makes it incredibly intriguing. It’s like a fairy tale that you heard million times as a child but always managed to find something new in it.

Additionally, and this is explained by the fact that the author has a silkscreen experience, it employes a neat technical trick. All the colors are special colors instead of regular CMYK and four special colors – applied with amazing understanding of how halftone works – create the whole color scheme of the book, including all the tints. This might not seem very exciting if you don’t think about the technical side of printing much but for us it was quite awe-inspiring.

re-paris-13 re-paris-12 re-paris-11

re-paris-20

And finally our possibly favorite new acquisition, Oh! Mon chapeau. You certainly noticed the little fact that we are suckers for pop-up books but more often than not we are disappointed to find them matched with bland illustrations and lacking in creativity. None of this applies to Chapeau. It’s as creative as books get, with a wonderful understanding of what pop-ups can add to the story (for instance, it uses very well the simple fact that something can hide behind a pop-up). The illustrations (as, if fact, the whole technical part of the book) are deceptively simple but it’s rare to see simplicity matched with such charm and lightness. Many illustrators try to achieve it as it is, clearly, a trend of today but few manage in such a seemingly effortless way.

re-paris-19 re-paris-18

In addition to the lovely Mondrianesque color scheme, the book has a difficult to define Parisian feel. Instant love.

re-paris-16 re-paris-15

re-books-warsaw-10

Aaand we’re back. As was obvious from the illustrations, we spent this year’s holiday in Paris (again), where we had a great time (again). We also bought a few books we will want to share with you but first, as promised before our leave, we want to share a few unique finds from Warsaw Book Fair. Because many of the books we bought tempted us with their canine heroes, we decided to make them the theme of today’s post.

re-books-warsaw-11 re-books-warsaw-12

This one by Beatrice Rodriguez is called The Chicken Thief and it is created completely without words. In fact, the only way the title appears is on an additional sleeve, so that the book can remain word-free. It’s an exciting picaresque about a kidnapping and a chase, including themes of friendship and forbidden love. The level of wordless storytelling is truly impressive and the author makes great use of the panoramic size of the book, which gives illustrations their unique character and structure.

re-books-warsaw-07

Chien Fou is another little gem about perseverance and the rewards of hope. It’s also about a little dog that runs a lot. The illustrations are guaranteed to make you a little sad and then quite happy. Also, do notice the lovely colors and masterful page compositions.

re-books-warsaw-08 re-books-warsaw-09

re-books-warsaw-01

Attention, voila Grand loup! is a simpler books for smaller children but it makes a great use of paper flaps where small animals hide from the big wolf (unnecessarily, it will turn out in an optimistic ending). Also, even though the illustrations are clearly much simpler, they manage not to be bland and boring. We enjoyed discovering who’s hiding behind the curtain or in the closet quite a lot and I’m sure for a small kid it must be quite an adventure.

re-books-warsaw-02 re-books-warsaw-03

re-books-warsaw-04

Finally, Le Petit Loup Rouge is a book we first saw online a while ago and we didn’t even know if it was actually published. We loved it back then and we loved it even more when we saw it in all its paper glory. It’s a marvelously illustrated tale in the best tradition of surrealist fairy-telling. It also has gorgeous typography and lovely atmosphere. There’s nothing not to adore about this one.

re-books-warsaw-06 re-books-warsaw-05

In case it made you wonder, most of these books happen to be in French because French literature was the theme of this year’s Fair. We bought books in English and in Polish too, they just didn’t happen to be about foxes, wolves or dogs: but we will share at least some of those at some later time. At any rate, for a moment we could’ve fooled ourselves that having already bought books in French we won’t need to buy them in Paris so maybe for once we’ll come back with not too heavy a bag but, of course, we were so, so wrong, as you will see next week.

re-holiday-paris-15-03

 

 

We honestly hoped to have one more post for you before our holiday but packing and other preparations overwhelmed us so instead accept our wishes of a good time in the coming week and see you when we get back.

150518-books

Sorry, but today’s post got swallowed by our trip to Warsaw Book Fair. You can see a selection of our spoils above and we’ll share more once we’ve taken better photos. It was a lot of fun but unfortunately ended in a cold and so instead of working on a post I’m choosing to go to bed. Regular updating (or, sort of regular) continues next week so have a good time until then.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 17,817 other followers