Monday, 21 May 2012

Lispector Quartered

New Directions is about to release new translations of four of the great Brazilian writer Clarice Lispector's books (I read and loved her Hour of the Star and some short stories, and so have already ordered all of these). The covers, designed by Paul Sahre, combine to form a portrait of her.



This is the original portrait. It's quite a captivating photo, and I can well see why Sahre was inspired to use it.



And pleasingly, it seems the back also form a single image:

Picture stolen from Three Percent, whose Chad Post went off on an enraged rant a while back over the presence of a quote from dull old Franzen on one of the covers.


Here are the individual covers:





16 comments:

Laura said...

These are lovely, but I do think Agua Viva may have gotten the short straw.

Becca Christiansen said...

Beautiful! I wish more editions of classic authors' books were like this.

JRSM said...

Me too, Becca.

Laura, that's true--definitely one that works better in the context of the set.

claire said...

Beautiful!

Ian Shimkoviak said...

there has to always be one or two covers in a series that are less than satisfying. Aqua Viva did get the bad end of the series bargain. But hey...

Luciano Bravo said...

Beautiful books. Very beautiful Clarissa. Lovely books. I've never read something like Lispector's books.

Chris Kearin said...

Love it when designers do this. My favorite was the old Penguin group of Somerset Maughams done by Derek Birdsall. I wonder if anyone has ever thought of doing this with an illustration across multiple spines?

JRSM said...

Chris, I don't know those Maughams--I will seek them out. As to the spines question, see these Casanovas and these Becketts

Chris Kearin said...

Also the spines of the hardcover volumes of Musil's The Man without Quality.

Here's the Maugham (but I think there were other volumes as well): http://mikedempsey.typepad.com/.a/6a00e5532538c48833011570cec338970b-popup

Chris Kearin said...

Make that The Man Without Qualities, of course.

JRSM said...

Aargh, I wish I had that Musil--mine is a big fat paperback that got damaged in the post.

Those Maughams are nice. I shall seek out more.

goldensylph said...

Interesting dynamic, here. Beautiful. The work done on covers is amazing. I shudder. I have to eventually think about a cover for two of my books, one, a paranormal, mystery conspiracy novel; the other is mundane, about wellness, combating obesity, the tainted American food supply tie in. Far from classic like these. I don't want to think about it.

Anyway, snooped your blog and joined it. Love if you joined mine...understand if you don't. (no obligation). It's http://www.thefatandtheskinnyonwellness.com/2012/05/genetic-engineering-of-foods-disaster.html

JRSM said...

Anyone sticking it to Monsanto is fine by me! How about a skull with corn and wheat stalks threaded through the eye and nostril sockets?

Chris Kearin said...

I like that idea. Like the old Ballantine Lovecraft covers from the '70s.

Dean Gorissen said...

And the back cover treatment is beautiful, too. Love it when the back isn't an afterthought.

JRSM said...

I just got my copies last week, and the covers are also printed my metallic inks (front and back). A really classy set of books.