London: Elkin Mathews and John Lane, 1893.
First edition. Original green cloth with elaborate all-over gilt-stamped design on both covers and spine, by Ricketts. A marvelous Association Copy, INSCRIBED BY RICKETTS ON FRONT FREE FLY TO VIVIAN FORBES (1891-1937), English soldier, painter and poet in the early 20th century, known for his relationship with painter Glyn Philpot, and protÈgÈ of Charles Ricketts. Written in Ricketts' spare script: "To V.F. from C.R., 1919." The decorative bookplate of of Vivian Forbes (designed by Forbes) is affixed to front pastedown. Forbes died tragically at the age of 46, committing suicide following the death of Philpot. Like Philpot, Forbes' work was affected by concern over the rise of fascism in Europe, and he was immediately influenced by the 19th century Aestheticism movement, and painters like Charles Ricketts and Shannon, the former taking him on as a protÈgÈ. "We have taken a great liking to Forbes, the sensual beast who ate my strawberries at Chilham," wrote Ricketts to Thomas Lowinsky, in December 1918. According to Rickettsí biographer, Forbes "brought out that side of Ricketts which yearned to guide younger men through the thickets of art and culture." From Paul van Capelleveen's excellent blog on Ricketts: (http://charlesricketts.blogspot.com): "Philpot's work was influenced by that of Ricketts and Shannon, and when the two older artists left Lansdowne House for Townshend House, Forbes and Philpot moved into their former flats and studios. Although Ricketts & Shannon and Forbes & Philpot knew each other, they never became close friends. They probably met in about 1918, and Ricketts took a liking for the lesser talented Forbes, about whom he wrote to Gordon Bottomley, 29 May 1919: 'The war caught him when hardly a man, and he is seeing Russian ballets, National Gallery pictures, and hearing Wagner or Chopin as novelties.' Ricketts and Shannon had a country retreat, the Keep of Chilham Castle in Kent, which had been purchased by their friend Edmund Davis.'" This inscription by Ricketts to Forbes is the only one we can locate, and appears early on in Forbes' budding career as an artist. A fine copy. Ricketts fine association copies are very scarce.
Price: $1,850.00 Item #4247