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Collection “Écrivains de Toujours”, Éditions du Seuil

Contributed by Florian Hardwig on Mar 28th, 2021. Artwork published in
circa 1954
.
    Pascal Pia: Apollinaire par lui-même, n° 20, 1954.
    Source: www.flickr.com Uploaded to Flickr by Alexis Orloff and tagged with “astrée”. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Pascal Pia: Apollinaire par lui-même, n° 20, 1954.

    Jean-Marie Domenach: Barrès par lui-même, n° 25, 1954.
    Source: www.flickr.com Uploaded to Flickr by Alexis Orloff and tagged with “astrée”. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Jean-Marie Domenach: Barrès par lui-même, n° 25, 1954.

    “Écrivains de Toujours” is a French paperback series devoted to classical and contemporary writers. It was launched in 1951 by Éditions du Seuil as the first in their Microcosme Collections (followed by “Petite Planète” in 1953). Each volume of the Microcosme paperbacks came in the same 18×11.5 format, and invariably consisted of 192 pages and 100 images. Conceived by Jean Bardet and Paul Flamand, “Écrivains de Toujours” was initially directed by Francis Jeanson, and continued by Monique Nathan and Denis Roche. Until 1981, a total of 106 volumes were published.

    This post shows examples that follow two basic templates for the cover design. Each of them features a quintessential French roman from the 20th century. The first covers have Robert Girard’s Astrée (Deberny & Peignot, 1923), used in roman caps for the author’s name with italics for “par lui-même”, and complemented by reversed all-caps Simplex étroit, the condensed style of Olive’s adaptation of Berthold-Grotesk. The later template replaces Astrée with Vendôme (Fonderie Olive, 1951), designed by François Ganeau with the help of Roger Excoffon. More specifically, the author’s name uses Vendôme noir, the heaviest weight released in 1953, together with the gras italique, or bold italic. The smaller text is again set in reversed all-caps Simplex, this time from the regular-wide bold weight.

    See more images in the Flickr album by Alexis Orloff.

    Jacques Suffel: Anatole France par lui-même, n° 24, 1954.
    Source: www.flickr.com Uploaded to Flickr by Alexis Orloff and tagged with “astrée”. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Jacques Suffel: Anatole France par lui-même, n° 24, 1954.

    Francis Jeanson: Sartre par lui-même, n° 29, 1955. Cover photo: Cartier-Bresson (Magnum).
    Source: www.flickr.com Uploaded to Flickr by Alexis Orloff and tagged with “astrée”. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Francis Jeanson: Sartre par lui-même, n° 29, 1955. Cover photo: Cartier-Bresson (Magnum).

    Henri Guillemin: Victor Hugo par lui-même, n° 1, 1964. Coevr after a portrait by Louis Boulanger.
    Source: www.flickr.com Uploaded to Flickr by Alexis Orloff and tagged with “vendôme”. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Henri Guillemin: Victor Hugo par lui-même, n° 1, 1964. Coevr after a portrait by Louis Boulanger.

    Albert Béguin: Pascal par lui-même, n° 6, 1952.
    Source: www.flickr.com Uploaded to Flickr by Alexis Orloff and tagged with “vendôme”. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Albert Béguin: Pascal par lui-même, n° 6, 1952.

    Gaëtan Picon: Malraux par lui-même, n° 12, 1953. Cover photo: Boris Peskine.
    Source: www.flickr.com Uploaded to Flickr by Alexis Orloff and tagged with “vendôme”. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Gaëtan Picon: Malraux par lui-même, n° 12, 1953. Cover photo: Boris Peskine.

    Jean Paris: Shakespeare par lui-même, n° 22, 1954.
    Source: www.flickr.com Uploaded to Flickr by Alexis Orloff and tagged with “vendôme”. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Jean Paris: Shakespeare par lui-même, n° 22, 1954.

    Gaëtan Picon: Balzac par lui-même, n° 33, 1969.
    Source: www.flickr.com Uploaded to Flickr by Alexis Orloff and tagged with “vendôme”. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Gaëtan Picon: Balzac par lui-même, n° 33, 1969.

    Monique Nathan: Virginia Woolf par elle-même, n° 35, 1956.
    Source: www.flickr.com Uploaded to Flickr by Alexis Orloff and tagged with “vendôme”. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Monique Nathan: Virginia Woolf par elle-même, n° 35, 1956.

    Samuel S. de Sacy: Descartes par lui-même, n° 36, 1956.
    Source: www.flickr.com Uploaded to Flickr by Alexis Orloff and tagged with “vendôme”. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Samuel S. de Sacy: Descartes par lui-même, n° 36, 1956.

    Jean Paris: James Joyce par lui-même, n° 39, 1957.
    Source: www.flickr.com Uploaded to Flickr by Alexis Orloff and tagged with “vendôme”. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Jean Paris: James Joyce par lui-même, n° 39, 1957.

    Jacques Cabau: Edgar Poe par lui-même, n° 49, 1960.
    Source: www.flickr.com Uploaded to Flickr by Alexis Orloff and tagged with “vendôme”. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Jacques Cabau: Edgar Poe par lui-même, n° 49, 1960.

    Dominique Arban: Dostoievski par lui-même, n° 57, 1962.
    Source: www.flickr.com Uploaded to Flickr by Alexis Orloff and tagged with “vendôme”. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Dominique Arban: Dostoievski par lui-même, n° 57, 1962.

    Morvan Lebesque: Camus par lui-même, n° 64, 1970.
    Source: www.flickr.com Uploaded to Flickr by Alexis Orloff and tagged with “vendôme”. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Morvan Lebesque: Camus par lui-même, n° 64, 1970.

    Sarane Alexandrian: André Breton par lui-même, n° 90, 1970.
    Source: www.flickr.com Uploaded to Flickr by Alexis Orloff and tagged with “vendôme”. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Sarane Alexandrian: André Breton par lui-même, n° 90, 1970.

    Typefaces

    • Astrée
    • Vendôme
    • Berthold-Grotesk

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