Last week I had a nice coffee chat with Roughcut Blogger Alexandra Palla (more about that in my next post) about the blogger scene in Austria and opened my holy Scarf Altar for her. If I remember correctly she was the third person, except my family, who had this privilege 😉 in all these years of collecting silk scarves by Hermès.
Opening one box after the other it came to my mind that I own more scarves that I don’t wear, but just cherish them for art’s sake. They are so beautiful and so very precious to me that I want to see them in pristine condition when I open the orange box and salute to the combination of exeptional graphic design and the art of screenprinting.
One of these very special designs is Litterature.
I believe it was first issued in 1952. My 90 cm Carré ‚Litterature‘ is a reissued design by A.M. Cassandre from the Hermès AW09/10 season. Read the biography notes, which I wrote from all the bits and pieces of information, I found during the years, and you will know exactly why this is the holy scarf of scarves for me (if you are a frequent reader of my blog and know my habits a bit by now):
Adolphe (Jean-Marie) Mouron Cassandre (1901-1968)
Born in the Ukraine, raised in Paris, where he studied as well at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. Already in 1923 his work supposed to get one of the biggest successes a graphic designer could ever dream of. After his poster Au Bûcheron was awarded at the Internationale des Arts Décoratifs and brought him to instant fame, he founded the advertising agency Alliance Graphique L.C. (Loupot-Cassandre) on the Rue du Moulin-Vert in Montparnasse and designed his advertising typeface, Bifur, which was produced by Deberny & Peignot in 1929. Other typefaces followed: sans-serif, black and gray Acier Noir (1935), Peignot, exhibited World’s Fair Paris (1937) and Touraine (1947) with Charles Peignot. He also designed several posters, logotypes, record jackets and typefaces for Olivetti.
1933 he made his debut as a painter for the french theater, designed productions, the maquettes for the sets for Monsieur de Pourceaugnac, sets for the Comedie-Francaise, the May Festival in Florence, the Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich, the Festival de l’Oeuvre du XXe Siecle in Paris, an open-air theatre in Aix-en-Provence, designs for the Paris Opera, the Comedie des Champs-Elysees in Paris and the Monte Carlo Opera and was awarded the French Legion of Honor in 1948.
1935, Cassandre signed an exclusive contract with the company Draeger Freres, which was the most successful printer and graphic design company established in 1886, for the French editions of his posters. 1936, after a retrospective exhibition of his posters at the MOMA in New York, Cassandre signed a contract with Harper’s Bazaar for the magazine’s covers.
1948 he stayed some time in Italy and designed several posters for Augusto Coen (Calcografia and Cartevalori) in Milan and experimented with the technique of polychrome copperplate engraving. The following years where determined by theater work, painting and moving to the countryside east of Lyon and returning back to Paris in 1965, when he designed his last poster: 24 Heures.
Cassandre died in his apartment on the Avenue Rene-Coty in Paris on June 17, 1968.
Wearing the smaller version of Litterature (45cm Gavroche) in a restaurant: here A Special View on … more Scarves from my Collection. More interesting Information about the artist Cassandre on Karoline Dreher’s blog, on brainpickings, ArtDirectors Club or on the offical website: cassandre-france.com
What is the reason for you to make a purchase desicion on a high quality silk scarf?