Thursday, June 21, 2007

Edith Wharton as Interior Designer

From the Hartford Courant:

We asked architect and interior designer Robert Couturier a few questions:
Which designers have most influenced your work?

Jean Michel Frank, Edith Wharton and Elsie De Wolfe.

--Submitted by Emily Orlando

Wharton Letters

Dear Edith Wharton scholars and librarians

I thought it a good idea to draw your attention to three letters sent by Wharton to John [Hughes Smith] that are up for auction on Thursday 21st June. The catalogue and relevant information is available from the auction room website and the hyperlinks below.

If you would like further information please contact me at this email address or at the phone number below.

Best wishes

Chris Albury
Auctioneer & Valuer
(Autographs, Documents, Photographs, Ephemera)
Dominic Winter Book Auctions
Mallard House, Broadway Lane, South Cerney, Nr Cirencester, Gloucestershire GL7 5UQ


Children's & Illustrated Books
Modern First Editons, Private Press & Original Artwork
Thursday 21 June commencing at 11am
Viewing Tuesday 19 & Wednesday 20 June 10am-7pm and morning of sale
HYPERLINK ""View Catalogue : HYPERLINK ""Images

22 *
Wharton (Edith, 1862-1937). Autograph letter signed 'E. Wharton', 53 rue de Varenne, [Paris], 31st December 1910, To John, wishing him best wishes for the New Year, and the Newcastle, if he goes, 'When you wrote me that you were sending a book of Ballads which was "improper reading", my spirits rose, & I fell upon it with avidity. But on perusing L's preface I learned to my dismay that he had personally seen to it that not a line or syllable of the original subsided "which boy & maid may not read". As I fall under neither of these categories, I felt that he need not have taken so [?] trouble in my behalf; but when (at his request) I turned to the "bracketed" lines in Glasgerion & Young Hunting, & saw that "He kissed her in the red fire-light" had been substituted for language of which I dare not even think (judging from the context), I realised how thoughtful you had been in selecting for me this expurgated edition of the songs of our rude ancestors. I trouble to think what I have escaped, when such indelicate allusions are still left & though I shall always value your kindness in sending me the book, I trust you will not expect me to leave on the drawing-room table a work in which such distressing instances of female weakness are celebrated with all the fallacious charms of art. It would certainly do you no good at Newcastle if it were known that you were in the habit of sending to ladies poems in which kissing in the red fire-light is regarded as a comparatively innocent pursuit!', then asking for a letter with news and concluding if there is any chance of his going down to Rome en-route for Newcastle, 4 pp., 8vo
HYPERLINK ""Illustrations Available

23 *
Wharton (Edith, 1862-1937). Autograph letter initialled, 53 rue de Varenne, [Paris], 20th November, no year, To John, thanking him for Max, 'It's the most precious thing I've seen for a long time. I sent you Michelangelo & again racked my tired and muddled head for the name of the other book. Do put it on a postcard I'm as ashamed of being so ineffectual as if I did it on purpose!' noting that Teddy is still in London and has written to Miss Bahlumann (?) & my maid that he never intended to return, 'as I have put him in too "humiliating a position"!!', then declaring that she may find herself 'bolting over to London & making the irrevocable and un-Nietzschean gesture', with a postscript saying that he must come over and see the incomparable Habit Vert and that she thinks A. C. Benson is almost the best of Max, 'the feud is wonderful', final blank a little soiled, 3 pp., 8vo


24 *
Wharton (Edith, 1862-1937). Autograph letter initialled, 53 rue de Varenne, [Paris], 5th February 1914, To John, apologising for not writing sooner since her return from America, but that she has been exhausted and though the trip was interesting and rewarding she was left in a state of 'exhaustion & dactylophobia from which I am just recovering', thanking him for his last two letters, telling that she did know of "The Custom" which she knows 'immensely better than the H of M, but most people won't see it because anglo saxons hate irony and can't get on without "heart-interest", suggesting that if he is inclined, he should take a motor trip with her through Algeria and Tunisia and that there is no one more than him that she would rather have as a compagnon de voyage and hoping that she can get Percy too, suggesting that they should not start later than the 10th March as it gets rather hot on the edge of the desert, 4 pp., 8vo