Mitsou, Astier de Villatte Edition
Balthus was ten years old when he told, in forty wonderful drawings, the story of his life with his cat Mitsou.
Writer Rainer Maria Rilke, a friend of the family, dazzled by the young painter’s talent and sensing the importance of these drawings already representative of the Balthusian universe, wrote the preface and supported the publication of this volume.
Ivan Pericoli and Benoît Astier de Villatte, also cat lovers who have always adored Mitsou, decided to commission from Monsieur Huin, a master typographer from their printing house (the last that uses typographic presses), a new edition that perfectly duplicates the 1921 original.
The book is made of bulky raw paper, and is backed by hand (a luxury today), making it more supple and pleasant to leaf through. The texts are composed with lead typesetting on antique linotype machines, and printed on typographic presses using an ink of true deep black that intensely contrasts with the white paper. The crushing of the paper, a characteristic of typographic printing, enhances the life and energy of the drawings. The timeless and intense charm that this book emits is what makes Mitsou a classic of surprisingly modern allure.
English translation included.