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COBURN, Alvin Langdon.

J. M. Barrie.

Published: London: 1909

Stock code: 79862

Price: £700

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This item is on show at 100 Fulham Road (map)

Proof before letters (no printed plate number or facsimile signature). J. M. Barrie titled to the foot of the mount in Coburn’s hand. Tipped on to a much larger mount than that published in “Men of Mark”. Coburn’s first book of portraits “Men of Mark” was published in 1911 (it was followed some years later by More Men of Mark) features 33 portraits of artists, thinkers and writers such as George Bernard Shaw, H. G. Wells, Henry James, Auguste Rodin, Henri Matisse, Theodore Roosevelt, Mark Twain, Frank Brangwyn, William Butler Yeats, Robert Bridges etc. Coburn’s introductory text provides a running commentary on his pursuit of his subjects and their eventual capture on film. ‘To make satisfactory photographs of persons it is necessary for me to like them, to admire them, or at least to be interested in them. It is rather curious and difficult to exactly explain, but if I dislike my subject it is sure to come out in the resulting portrait. I had thought of using ‘Men of Genius’ as the title for this book, but Arnold Bennett objected seriously, saying, very modestly, that he did not consider himself a man of genius, but merely a working author, and absolutely refusing to join the throng unless I changed it, so I told him that if he would give me a better one I would use it. ‘Men of Mark’ is his alternative. ‘

Image size: 22 x 17.3 cm. Mount size: 45.7 x 27.8 cm. Framed in a hand finished black wooden frame. Monochrome photogravure tipped onto a white wove mount. Produced under the personal supervision of Coburn on his own copper plate press. Light toning to mount otherwise in excellent condition.

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