Aux Nations Glorieuses 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917
An incredibly scarce commemorative album with 10 hand-painted gouache allegorical illustrations representing the Great War Allied forces.
First, limited and only edition. This one is 49/500. The covers and pages are thick blue green card and bound with a tricolour ribbon, the album is then housed in a vellum folder. Overall dimensions of the album are 26 × 27cm, each painting is 22 × 12cm. French text.
This scarce item has been signed by Michel Pozzi several times. Each of the gouache paintings have been signed lower right, the limitation label to the front inner cover appears to have been signed stating "Gouaches originals peintes par M Pozzi", and opposing each painting is a tipped-in envelope with printed message but signed by Pozzi. The whole album is housed in a vellum folder which has again been signed by the artist.
This is an incredible hand painted commemorative album by Michel Pozzi with original gouache paintings representing the allied countries involved in the war. The gouache paintings appear to have been executed over a lghtly printed template with the painting applied over. The album consists: title page with printed lettering to border and hand-painted decoration and titling, this is followed by each of the Allies, all of which have a hand-painted allegorical illustration (for example the British one has the Royal Crest with Honi Soit Qui Mal y Pense, the lion and unicorn, visual reference to the Royal Navy, and also incorporates the names of the commonwealth). Each country is then faced with a tipped in envelope, folded with painted titling and seal, whch when open contains the text of a letter from the British embassy. The Allies represented are: France, Russia, Great Britain, Serbia, Belgium, Montenegro, Japan, Italy, Portugal, Roumania, and America. Each sheet and letter is embossed with Pozzi's studio stamp.
The vellum folder also has hand-painted decoration, and states "Aux nations glorieuses, Allégories analytiques de leurs principes dans cette guerre. Oeuvre appréciée par lettres de le Présidence, des ambassades et légations des états alliés à Paris".
This is a scarce Great War item. The only other copies I have located are one at auction in France (see Bibliorare auction 30/7/13 lot 197), and one held in the Wolfsonian at Florida University which has scanned every page. Comparison with this copy show differences with each page confirms the individually hand-painted nature of this item. I have many more images than shown here, please contact me to see them.
The album itself is in very good condition. There is a small tear at the base of the spine to the blue green card, and a few of the letter sheets have very minor creasing or folding to the edges. The plates are in very good condition. The vellum folder is in fair condition only, with heavy staining to the bottom and discoloration / darkening all over. There are patches of surface loss to the sides. However, the painted title and design are in good order.