Karl Blossfeldt: Wundergarten der Natur (1932 First Edition in Scarce Dust Jacket!)
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Estimated Value: $ 5,000  –  $5,500
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Aug 7, 2008 2:00 pm MT
Wundergarten der Natur. Neue Bilddokumente schöner Pflanzenformen von Karl Blossfeldt. Photographs and foreword by Blossfeldt. Verlag fur Kunstwissenschaft, 1932. Unpaged text + plates. Small folio. First edition. Clothbound with debossed gilt plant design, title, and spine. Photo-illustrated dust jacket. 120 Gravure reproductions. Includes list of plates.

The follow-up volume to Urformen der Kunst in an incredibly rare dust jacket!
Blossfeldt was a university teacher and used his photographs to teach formal art studies at the Royal School of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Berlin. He photographed plants systematically with a 13x18cm view camera of his own construction. Immensely popular and profound in their simplicity, Blossfeldt's typology of plant forms drew parallels between nature and art. They were used as inspiration for jewelers, wrought iron workers, designers, craftsman, and artists worldwide. His vision is as fresh and unforgettable today as one could imagine it to be when this book was first published. As Martin Parr and Gerry Badger point out, while Blossfeldt's work was "a key model for the 'typologies' school of contemporary German photography...it was not a Conceptual work of art. It was, like so much German photography of this period, pedagogical in nature, as much founded on the Arts-and-Crafts ethos as Bauhaus principles."

Fine+ in Near Fine- dust jacket; clean bright boards with no rubbing to gilt; absolutely pristine pages without a trace of foxing; jacket has been reinforced with acid free tape at upper and lower edges; minor chipping at crown and base of spine and upper corner of rear panel; small area of dampstaining (about 1 1/2" square) along fore-edge of rear panel; some spotting and tanning along spine area.
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