THE PICTURE OF DORIAN GRAY, by Oscar Wilde; Majeska - 1930 [Illust Signed]


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The Picture of Dorian Gray

by Oscar Wilde

illustrated by Majeska 

Limited Edition 586/1540. Signed by Majeska. New York: Horace Liveright, 1930.

Hardback is overall in VERY GOOD+ condition.

  • Black boards are beveled and in overall very good condition.
  • Boards show minimal shelfwear. (See Photos).
  • Head corners are lightly bumped. (See Photos).
  • Spine has gilt decoration against a black background, along with a white title block.
  • Binding is strong and secure. 
  • Frontispiece is clear and present with intact tissue guard, as well as signature of the illustrator. (See Photos).
  • 8 illustrated plates are bright and clear with intact tissue guards.
  • Interior exhibits minimal signs of age and wear such as light edgewear and a couple closed tears in deckled edges.
  • Inside pages are free of writing and intentional marks.
  • A number of pages remain unopened.
  • Head of text block is gilt with deckle fore and foot edges.
  • AJ2020.0203

282 pages. 6.5 x 9.5 inches.

Wilde's scandalous story is published here with his original preface in defense of his work, often referred to as an early artist statement or manifesto. His only novel was originally published in 1890 to intense public outcry of immorality and indecency.

Dorian Gray is the subject of a full-length portrait in oil by Basil Hallward. The artist is impressed and infatuated with Dorian's beauty, and believes Dorian's beauty is responsible for the new mood in his art as a painter. Through Basil, Dorian meets Lord Henry Wotton, and is soon enthralled by the aristocrat's hedonistic worldview - that beauty and sensual fulfillment are the only things worth pursuing in life. With new understanding that his beauty will fade, Dorian wants to sell his soul to ensure that the picture will age and fade instead of himself. The wish is granted, and Dorian pursues a libertine life of varied amoral experiences while staying young and beautiful; meanwhile, his portrait ages and records every sin.

Oscar Wilde (1854-1900) was a famous Irish poet, playwright and personality of the late 19th century. At the height of his popularity, he was known throughout London for his style and wit, and eventually his criminal conviction for "gross indecency"(homosexuality), imprisonment, and early death at age 46. 

Madame Yna Majeska, aka Henriette Stern, was artist, decorator, designer, book illustrator and costume designer, particularly for Ziegfeld Follies. Although born in Philadelphia, PA, she found more work as an artist by pretending to be from Europe, where she had received her artist training. Her career in novel illustrations spanned the 1920's & '30s, and is known for it's vibrant colors and compelling lush women.

EDITION POINTS: Hand-numbered as 586 of 1540. Flat signed by illustrator Majeska on the frontispiece. 

AS IS! Please see photos. More photos available upon request.

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