Hartford: James Thrall Soby, 1934. First edition. Publisher's plastic comb binding, stiff wrappers. Minor vertical crease to front cover, light chipping to outer edge. Upper and lower portions of the front cover coming loose from the binding, but the cover is still held firmly. Internally clean and bright. Now housed in a custom clamshell box.
The very rare first issue. As Roth describes, the publisher "attempted to generate demand where none existed by suggesting the edition had sold out. After replacing the title pages of these copies- presumably a healthy percentage of the run whose sales had in fact, been slow to none- with one stating 'deuxième edition,' second edition, he returned them for sale. Copies with the original title page are exceedingly rare."
Man Ray's first monograph, with texts in English and French by Duchamp, Tzara, Eluard, Breton, and Man Ray himself. Frontispiece portrait of Man Ray by Picasso. Contains 104 heliogravure images. "Part art, part illustration, [the book] was meant to be an inventory of his work, a kind of grand promotional catalogue.... Man Ray's album was a virtuoso presentation of modern European-style photography. Close-up views, distorted angles, double exposures, night photography, negative prints, rayographs, still lifes, nudes, portraits, fashion photographs, and even a painting... were reproduced.... Intended for an American more than a European audience, the album was Man Ray's means of presenting his career to a homeland that had rarely seen his work." (Perpetual Motif: The Art of Man Ray, pp. 35-39) Roth, pp. 80-81. Item #2198