Verona: The Limited Editions Club, 1958. Item #03167
With Fifteen Fine Full-Page Etched Plates by Hans Erni
OVID. [GARTH, Sir Samuel, Translator]. [ERNI, Hans, Etcher]. Ovid's Metamorphoses. In Fifteen Books. Translated into English verse under the direction of Sir Samuel Garth by John Dryden, Alexander Pope, Joseph Addison, William Congreve and other eminent hands. Verona: The Limited Editions Club, 1958.
One of fifteen hundred copies signed by the engraver and the printer, of which this is number 1483 Designed by Dr. Giovanni Mardersteig; set in monotype Centaur.
Octavo (9 1/2 x 6 1/4 inches; 241 x 158 mm.). lvi, 520, [1, colophon], [1, blank], [1, limitation], [1, blank] pp.
Fifteen fine full-page etched plates by Hans Erni.
Quarter cream buckram over decorative green printed paper boards. Title label on spine lettered and tooled in gilt. A fine copy in the original dust jacket (small tear at top of spine) and brown board slipcase.
The Metamorphoses ("Books of Transformations") is a Latin narrative poem by the Roman poet Ovid , and is considered to be his magnum opus. Comprising fifteen books and over 250 myths, the poem chronicles the history of the world from its creation to the deification of Julius Caesar within a loose mythico-historical framework. Although meeting the criteria for an epic, the poem defies simple genre classification by its use of varying themes and tones. Ovid took inspiration from the genre of metamorphosis poetry, and some of the Metamorphoses derives from earlier treatment of the same myths; however, he diverged significantly from all of his models. One of the most influential works in Western culture, the Metamorphoses has inspired such authors as Dante, Boccaccio, Chaucer, and Shakespeare. Numerous episodes from the poem have been depicted in acclaimed works of sculpture and painting by artists such as Titian. Although interest in Ovid faded after the Renaissance, towards the end of the twentieth century there was a resurgence of attention to his work; today, the Metamorphoses continues to inspire and be retold through various media. The work has been the subject of numerous translations into English, the first by William Caxton in 1480.
Hans Erni (1909-2015) was a Swiss graphic designer, painter, illustrator, engraver and sculptor. Born in Lucerne, he studied art in France and Berlin, and admired artist such as Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque. He is known for having illustrated postage stamps, his lithographs for the Swiss Red Cross, his participation on the Olympic Committee as well as his activism. His 1939 works and first major public success was a mural titled Switzerland: "Vacation Land of the People" was commissioned and displayed for the national exhibition in Zurich. The Hans Erni Museum, situated in the grounds of the Swiss Museum of Transport in Lucerne, contains a large collection of artwork, he also designed ceramics and theater costumes and sets. He did the art for Swiss bank notes, in the 1940's but, after the notes were already printed they were never published, because a member of the State Council of Lucerne criticized that Erni was deemed as a communist. However, Erni was never member of any political party. In 2004, he was awarded as an "Honourable citizen of Lucerne" and on January 10th, 2009 he received the Swiss Award for lifetime accomplishment. In his carrier he realized about 300 posters, several murals (for the Red Cross, the IOC, the United Nations, ICAO, and many public and private enterprises). He illustrated about 200 books and created 90 Postage stamps and 25 medals.