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Lot 165: "Vaysrusishe Folkmayses" - Illustrations by Eliezer Lissitzky, 1923

Auction 53 - Rare and Important Items

by Kedem Public Auction House Ltd

15 November 2016

Jerusalem, Israel

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Description: "Vaysrusishe Folkmayses" [White Russian Folktales], by L. Kvitko [Leib Kvitko]. Published by "Idisher sek?tsye bam K?omisaryat? far folk?bildung", R.S.F.S.R. (Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic) / printed by Lutz & Voght, Berlin, 1923. Yiddish. Folktales from Belarus, translated into Yiddish by Leib Kvitko. Colorful cover designed and illustrated by Eliezer (El) Lissitzky. In addition, the book contains 14 black and white illustrations by Lissitzky. El (Eliezer) Lissitzky (1890-1941), a Jewish-Russian artist, designer, photographer, teacher, typographer and architect, one of the most prominent figures in the Russian Avant-Garde movement; together with his teacher and friend, Kazimir Malevitch, contributed to the development of the Suprematist Movement. Lissitzky designed exhibitions and various propaganda publications for the communist regime in Russia and had a substantial influence on the Bauhaus and Constructivist movements. Early in his career Lissitzky expressed interest in the Jewish culture (he even participated in the ethnographic expedition headed by An-sky in the Pale of Settlement) and many of his works incorporated Jewish motifs. Aiming at promoting Jewish culture in Russia he designed Yiddish children's books. The book offered here was created during his stay in Berlin. One year earlier, Lissitzky illustrated another anthology of folktales translated by Leib Kvitko ("Ukraynishe Folkmayses" - Ukrainian Folktales). 98, [6] pp, 21 cm. Text-block in good condition. Tears at margins of cover and spine (some are open tears). Cover and first sixteen pages are partly detached. "Printed in Russia" ink-stamp appears on the back cover.

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