1880. COOK, Clarence. WHAT SHALL WE DO WITH OUR WALLS? New York: Warren, Fuller, 1880. 4to. Publisher's cloth spine, pictorial boards, all edges gilt. (ii), ii, 35 pages, 5 chromolithographic plates. First edition. A rare decorative arts book with only one copy recorded on OCLC - Columbia University owns a copy of the second edition. The first edition of the essay that fueled the Victorian infatuation with wallpaper in the United States. Cook's advocation of wallpaper has distinctive American elements, and his book is a treatise to promote papers manufactured by Warren, Fuller, & Co. A prominent art critic and author of The House Beautiful (1878), Cook examines wall treatments from Italian, French, and English traditions, and cites Japan's long history of paper decoration with approval, on his way to an emphatic defense of modern American wallpaper. Its five chromolithographic plates, include two by Louis C. Tiffany (his first book illustrations) and three by Samuel Colman, the noted American artist. Cook encourages his readers to support innovative American designers and manufacturers as they strive to capture the "spirit-of-the- age" in interior design, "refusing to copy anybody, and trusting to artistic ideas and feeling to carry the day." A near-fine copy of a scarce Aesthetic Movement work, with striking black-and-gold chromolithographic plates. (Inventory #: 39637)
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