On View In:
Gallery 359
Artist:   Henri Matisse
Marianna Alcaforado
Tériade, Paris
Mourlot Freres, Paris
Jourde et Allard , (text)  
Title:   Cover from Lettres portugaises (Portuguese Letters)  
Date:   1946  
Medium:   Lithographs, letterpress  
Dimensions:   10 7/8 x 8 3/8 in. (27.62 x 21.27 cm)  
Credit Line:   Gift of Bruce B. Dayton  
Location:   Gallery 359  

This book revolves around the 17th century love letters of a Portuguese nun named Marianna Alcaforado. The letters, which have often been attributed to the original translator of the texts, Gabriel-Joseph de Lavergne, the vicomte of Guilleragues, are deeply sensual and spiritual and express the pain of unrequited love. This was Matisse's first project with the noted Greek publisher and critic Tériade, who published the artistic and literary magazine Verve from 1936 to 1960. The collaboration between Matisse and Tériade, which also included the 1947 book Jazz, produced some of the most creative and inventive artist's books of this century. Letters of a Portuguese Nun is one of the most intimate of these joint projects.

Name:   Matisse, Henri  
Nationality:   French  
Life Dates:   French, 1869 - 1954  
Name:   Alcaforado, Marianna  
Role:   Author  
Nationality:   French  
Life Dates:   French  
Name:   Tériade, Paris  
Role:   Publisher  
Nationality:   French  
Name:   Mourlot Freres, Paris  
Role:   Lithographer  
Nationality:   French  
Life Dates:   France  
Name:   Jourde et Allard  
Role:   Printer  

Object Description  
Inscriptions:   Mark Watermark:  
Classification:   Books  
Physical Description:   25 full page lithographs plus numerous ornaments and initials; binding: lithographic paper cover, printed in purple (unbound, loose sheets); 2nd cover beige cloth; endpapers: Arches wove; slip case: beige cloth  
Creation Place:   Europe, France, , , Paris  
Edition:   Edition of 250; 61/250 plus I-XX H.C. (first 80 copies have set of 12 proof studies)  
Accession #:   B.85.4.1b  
Owner:   The Minneapolis Institute of Arts