HOOLA VAN NOOTEN, BERTHE. Fleurs, fruits et feuillages choisies de la flore et de la pomone de l'Ile de Java peints d'après nature.
Brussels, Émile Tarnier, 1863. First edition. ?Publisher's printed portfolio (or possibly a period case constructed using a livraison cover). 23 1/4 x 17 5/8 inches (59 x 45 cm); 3 ff. (title, dedication and prefaratory leaves) 40 chromolithographed plates after the drawings of Van Nooten, some heightened with added color or gum arabic. The portfolio case stained at the foot, minute staining to the extreme lower margin of the first third of the work, some slight tissue adhesions noted to a couple of plates, other minor evidences of soil and wear, but in all a rather attractive copy of a distinctly scarce work, apparently untrimmed.
An exceptionally fine series of plates of flowers and fruits, the latter including cacao, papaya, durian, mangosteen, cashew, sweetsop, banana, etc. Berthe Hoola van Nooten lived for some years in Galveston, Texas, until (after the death of her husband, which apparently resulted in personal insolvency) she moved to Java with her brother, a weathy merchant. "Van Nooten was clearly a more than competent artist, for the splendid tropical plants, with their lush foliage, vividly coloured flowers and exotic fruit, have been depicted with great skill. She managed to accentuate the splendour of each species by adopting a style that combined great precision and clarity with a touch of neo-Baroque exuberance, reveling in the rich forms and colours of the tropics. The reader's eye is immediately captured by the dark leaves, shown furled or crumpled or partly nibbled away by insects, the delicately rendered details of the follicles and seeds, and the heavy clusters of flowers that cascade down the page. The excellent reproduction of the artist's drawings in the form of chromolithographs lends a tactile quality to these striking images."-- Lucia Tongiorgi Tomasi, An Oak Spring Flora, 1997. Great Flower Books, p. 60; Nissen BBI 931; Stafleu & Cowan 3025.
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