Daniel Crouch Rare Books to bring five museum-quality pieces to TEFAF 2016

Celebrating their sixth consecutive year exhibiting at the fair, Daniel Crouch Rare Books, leading maps and rare books dealer, will return to TEFAF Maastricht with an impressive selection of works including a monumental wall map of astonishing beauty, made in 1604 at the beginning of the Dutch Golden Age by Luis Texeira. Dutch world wall maps from this era are incredibly rare and this engraved map, printed on twelve sheets, is the only surviving complete example.

The stand will also feature Willem Janszoon Blaeu’s pair of 26-inch terrestrial and celestial globes, Globus Orbis Terrae (c.1645-48) which are examples of the peak of Golden Age Dutch cartography. They are a remarkable record of human achievement in a period of exceptional geographical discovery when the Dutch proved themselves as masters of the sea and changed the face of the world. After Willem’s death in 1638, his son, Joan Blaeu (1596-1673), undertook a major update of the globe to incorporate new discoveries including re-engraving changes to Canada to show the discoveries of Thomas Button (1612-13) and William Baffin (1616), and the removal of the name and diminution in size of the mythical island of Frisland.

In addition to Willem Janzoon Blaeu’s globes will be Johannes Blaeu’s Le Grand Atlas (Jean Blaeu Amsterdam 1663) ‘an exceptionally attractive example of the greatest and finest atlas ever published’ (Verwey). Embellished in the Baroque style, the maps are cited as one of the most lavish and highly prized illustrated books of the seventeenth century and frequently served as the official gift of the Dutch Republic to princes and other authorities.

Moving to the 19th century and a different country, Crouch will present a very fine example of ‘one of the greatest achievements in French publishing’ (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York). It is a first edition of the first scientific description of ancient and modern Egypt and one of the most important and ambitious publication projects ever undertaken by the French state. Le Description de l’Egypte, was begun in 1803 and took more than twenty years to produce its 34 volumes. Originally conceived as a formidable propaganda tool to the glory of the Emperor and his Army, the book would reveal itself particularly as the prestigious and magnificent witness to a meeting between two civilisations, ancient and modern, and two cultures, Muslim and European, of the late eighteenth century. This particular work was presented to Guy de Lavau, prefect of the Police of Paris, and is offered together with a remarkable archive of original documentation, comprising manuscript appointments and Honours bestowed upon him, rare printed ephemera describing the collation and furniture, and manuscript documentation relating to the presentation of this particular copy.

Daniel Crouch Rare Books can be located at TEFAF Maastricht in the Works on Paper section, Stand 702.

Read article on artdaily.com