Thursday, 27 September 2018

The Bookplate Society

Alexander Teixeira de Mattos (1865 - 1921)

Alexander Louis Teixeira de Mattos San Payo y Mendes (April 9, 1865 – December 5, 1921), better known as Alexander Teixeira de Mattos was a journalist, literary critic, publisher and fine translator.
Of Portuguese Jewish descent Teixeira de Mattos was born in The Netherlands to an English mother and a Dutch father. Coming to England in 1874, he was educated at a Roman Catholic School and converted to Catholicism. Fluent in several languages, Alexander Teixeira de Mattos became the translator of Maurice Maeterlinck’s books and of, among others, Emile Zola, Alexis de Tocqueville, François Leroux, René de Chateaubriand, Louis Couperus and Jean-Henri Fabre. During the Great War he became a British citizen. In 1920 was made a Knight of the Order of Leopold.

McKenna, Stephen. A chapter in the life of Alexander Teixeira de Mattos, New York, Dodd, Mead & Co, 1922

Wednesday, 29 August 2018

The Napier Bookplates

Francis Scott Napier, 8th Lord Napier (23 February 1758 – 1 August 1823) was a British peer and army officer.
The son of Hon. William Napier (later 7th Lord Napier) and his wife, the Hon. Mary, a daughter of Charles Cathcart, 8th Lord Cathcart.
Entered the Army 1774 commissioned into the 31st Foot and was promoted to a lieutenant in 1776. After serving with General Burgoyne in Canada, he fought in the American Revolutionary War with the Convention Army under Burgoyne at the time of their defeat and surrender at the Battle of Saratoga in 1777; being imprisoned after the Convention of Saratoga 1777; Maj, 4th Regiment of Foot 1784-89; Grand Master of Scottish Freemasons 1788-90 ; his right to the peerage was questioned at the election of Scottish peers in 1790 but established in 1793; a Representative Peer for Scotland 1796-1806 and 1807-23; Lord Lieutenant of Selkirkshire 1797-1823; Lord High Commissioner to the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland 1802-16
On 13 April 1784, Napier married Maria Margaret Clavering (c.1756–1821), the daughter of Lt.-Gen. Sir John Clavering, at St George's, Hanover Square. They had five daughters and four sons, including Hon. William John (1786–1834), later 9th Lord Napier.
Franks 21 540 & 21 541
A Spade Shield Armorial.
Arms: Quarterly:  1st and 4th, Argent a Saltire engrailed cantoned of four Roses Gules barbed Vert (Napier); 2nd and 3rd, Or on a Bend Azure a Mullet pierced between two Crescents of the field within a Double Tressure flory counter-flory of the second (Scott of Thirlestane); below the Shield on a Compartment the Top of a Tower embattled Argent, masoned Sable issuant therefrom six Lances disposed saltirewise proper three and three with Pennons Azure (Scott). Coronet.
Supporters: Dexter - An Eagle wings expanded proper; Sinister - A Chevalier in Coat of Mail and Steel Cap all proper holding in the exterior hand a Lance with a Pennon Azure.
Mottoes: Ready Aye Ready
Some, mistakenly attribute it, to his son William John Napier, 9th Lord Napier, Baron Napier, FRSE (13 October 1786 – 11 October 1834) was a British Royal Navy officer and trade envoy in China who according to Franks had also an armorial bookplate 21 543 (and 21 544 – 21 546).

Franks 21 542
Most probably of Francis Napier, 10th Lord Napier and 1st Baron EttrickKTPC (15 September 1819 – 19 December 1898) was a Scottish diplomat and colonial administrator. He served as the British Minister to the United States from 1857 to 1859, Netherlands from 1859 to 1860, Russia from 1861 to 1864, Prussia from 1864 to 1866 and as the Governor of Madras from 1866 to 1872. He also acted as the Viceroy of India from February to May 1872. Napier was made a Knight of the Thistle in 1864. In 1872, he was created Baron Ettrick in the Peerage of the United Kingdom in recognition of his services in India. Married Anne Jane Charlotte Lockwood CI (b. 1824; d. 24 Aug 1911).
Arms, encircled by the badge and motto “Fax mentis Honestae Gloria” of a Baronet of Nova Scotia, supporters (same as above) and coronet on a mantle.

Lord Francis Napier left a valuable library which was sold at an Auction in 1912, at Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge.
Cf. Catalogue of the valuable library of the late Dowager Lady Napier and Ettrick (for the most part collected by her husband, the late Lord Napier and Ettrick, K.T.) : comprising antiquarian, architectural and genealogical works on Scotland ... ; numerous works on America and India ; and works in general literature ... ; also the library of the late Canon A.R. Maddison comprising standard works, chiefly modern, including many works on genealogy and heraldry : which will be sold by auctions by Messrs. Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge ... on Monday, 11th of November, 1912, and two following days.

Thursday, 12 July 2018

OBITUARY - Artur Mário Mota Miranda (1928-2018)

Artur Mário Mota Miranda, who died at the age of 90 on April 25, was the dean of the Portuguese ex-librists, and dedicated his life to the dissemination and promotion of ex libris across borders.

At the end of the 50's he founded in Oporto with other enthusiasts and amateurs of ex libris the Oporto Association of Ex  íbris (APEL) that in 1956 began the publication of a magazine - "The Art of Ex Libris" with uninterrupted publication until the mid-'90s, dedicated exclusively to the world of ex libris under the direction of Artur Mário Mota Miranda. Neither his professional career in the ranks of the Overseas Administration that led him to prolonged stays in Portuguese Africa diminished his untiring enthusiasm with the timely publication of the Bulletin. Tireless because it involved keeping copious postal correspondence with collectors, artists, printers and similar associations.

Under his impulse APEL gradually established fruitful international contacts with the revived European ex libristi movement and with the ex libris artists active in Spain, France, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Denmark and above all, in the Eastern European countries.
In fact, from 1953 onwards, Ex Libris Congresses (or Meetings) began to take place in various European cities - Kufstein (Austria), Lugano (Switzerland), Antwerp (Belgium), Frankfurt (R: FA), Amsterdam Barcelona (Spain), followed by Vienna, Paris and Krakow in 1964 - bringing together artists and collectors. Hence the foundation of an organization of pan-European origin that brought together various national Ex Libris Associations was a step. FISAE was born in 1966, during the Congress of Hamburg, under the impulse of Dott. Ing. Gianni Mantero, Albert Collart, Jean-Charles Meyer, Mme Meyer-Noirel and Carlo Chiesa, with 15 founding members, among them the A.P.E.L. who immediately joined, again under the influence of Mota Miranda.

Under the auspices of FISAE, 7 volumes of the work "Artistas de Ex-LíbrisEx Libris Artists – Artistes d’ex Libris" were published up to 1984, with Mota Miranda assuring the edition and publication of volumes III-VII, the last published.

Accumulating the functions of Director and Editor of the Bulletin «The Art of Ex-Libris» with those of President of the APEL Board that, in 1975, would be renamed the Portuguese Ex Libris Association, Mota Miranda gave the Bulletin an international perspective with a high graphic quality and content, disseminating the work of numerous ex libris artists, highlighting those from Eastern European countries, to a wider audience of ex libris amateurs, attracting the support of the most important artists and collectors.

Two decades after the foundation of APEL and one of the foundation of FISAE, Mota Miranda presented, on behalf of APEL, the candidacy for the organization of the XVI International FISAE Ex Libris Congress, which was to be held in Lisbon from 16-20 August. 1976, with the invaluable support of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation.

Mota Miranda was able to gather around him a plethora of enthusiasts - especially the eminent collector and artist Aulo-Gélio Severino Godinho, Eugénio Mealha, Fausto Moreira Rato and Sérgio de Oliveira - who successfully completed the Congress, with six excellent thematic Exhibitions of Ex Libris, Conferences and an International Ex Libris Contest, which involved, as an unprecedented fact, simultaneous translation at conferences and the Assembly of Delegates.

Meanwhile, Mota Miranda shuffled the task of editing and directing the monumental work Ex-libris bio-bibliographical encyclopedia of contemporary ex-libris art: encyclopédie bio-bibliographique de l'art de l'ex-libris contemporain: encyclopaedia bio-bibliographical of the art of the contemporary ex-libris: Bio-Bibliographische Enzyklopädie der Kunst Zeitgenössischer Exlibris: Bio-bibliografica dell'arte dell'ex libris contemporary, 30 vols, Braga, Edit. Franciscan, [1985-2003]. 

Following another one titled Contemporary International Ex-Libris Artists, having edited 24 volumes [2003-2018].

And in association with the great Italian collector Prof. Gian Carlo Torre he edited and published in 2003 the reference work on the Cervantine thematics - La aventura de Don Quijote en los ex-libris, edition limited to 300 copies, with articles by Gian Carlo Torre, Manuel Fontán del Junco and Mariarosa Scaramuzza Vidoni, and which includes a Catalog of Cervantes Ex Libris, by Gian Carlo Torre, José Miguel Valderrama Esparza and Artur Mota Miranda. 

In 2013-2104, she also edited two limited edition thematic works "Women Artists in the World of Ex Libris" and "Ex Libris Designers and their World".

Recognizing and paying tribute to his long activity as publisher and diffuser of the ex libris, FISAE awarded him in 2003 the Helmer Fogedgaard Certificate and in 2007, the Gianni Mantero Certificate.

Artur Mota Miranda had an unusual large number of personal ex-libris made by some of the most famous ex libris artists of the last 50 years, from Eduardo Dias Ferreira, Paes Ferreira, Aulo-Gélio Godinho, Marie-Louise Albessart, René Barande, Charles Favet, Jocelyn Mercier, Daniel Meyer, Raymond Prevost, E. Reitsma-Valenca, Antoon Vermeylen, Raymond Verstraeten, Christian Blæsbjerg, Julio Fernandez Saez, Maria Josefa Colom, Dafinel Duinea, Virgilio Tramontin, Pier-Luigi Gerosa, Ernesto Guffanti, Anatolij Kalaschnikow, Jaroslav Horanek, Miroslav Houra, Pavel Hlavaty, Miroslav Knap, Bohumil Kratky, Jana Krejcova, Mart Lepp, Arisztid Nagy, Arpad Daniel Nagy, Johann Naha, Evald Okas, Herbert S. Ott, Béla Petry, Zoltan Vén, Jaroslav Vodrazka to Marius Martinescu, to name but a few.

And, over more than half a century of activity, he assembled a vast collection of ex libris, highlighting the themes that attracted him most - Modernism and Art-Nouveau and Cervantes.

Over the past years he was an active presence in the FISAE Congresses keeping in touch with old friends, collectors and artists, and making new acquaintances among the new generation of artists.

With Mota Miranda disappears one of the pillars of ex libris in Portugal and a  distinguished member of a generation who revived ex libris in Europe.