Destination Special Collections: Gough Art Book Collection

C. Ray and Georgia Leach Gough worked as professors in the College of Visual Arts and Design at University of North Texas. With their love of art, architecture, and design, the Goughs collected numerous books related to fine art, some of which are considered major works in the artist’s career, such as Henri Matisse’s Jazz or David Hockney’s Blue Guitar.

Henri Matisse, Jazz

Jazz is a series of works by artist Henri Matisse, which shows circus scenes cut out of colored paper. This is the first example of Matisse working in this way, which would eventually be his main method of creating art. The page shown is titled “Nightmare of the White Elephant” and shows a circus elephant performing a trick. Matisse described the elephant as dreaming of his long-lost childhood in the jungle, with the red flames symbolizing his anguish.

Find Jazz in the UNT Library Catalog.

David Hockney

Inspired by Wallace Stevens’ poem “The Man with the Blue Guitar,” which was inspired by Picasso’s The Old Guitarist, David Hockney created a set of 20 color etchings, for The Blue Guitar, to interpret the themes of the poem.

Paper Pools shows a series of work created by Hockney using a technique of creating an image in colored paper pulps. This series is the only time he used this technique, which allowed him to explore the refraction of light through the gently moving water. Both of these books are signed by the artist.

Find Paper Pools in the UNT Library Catalog.

Find The Blue Guitar in the UNT Library Catalog.

Selections in Modern Art

These volumes contain 125 plates of steel engravings and etchings representing works of recent and contemporary artists of the late 19th century. The etching “Cedars by Moonlight” by James Smillies, 1878, is one of the earliest instances of an American etcher beginning to differentiate between daylight and moonlight, a distinction easier made in theory than in practice.

Find Selections in Modern Art in the UNT Library Catalog.

Le Fontane Del Giardino Estense In Tivoli

This is the fourth part of a print series showing the main fountains, water sources, and gardens in and around Rome. The production of this book is a mystery to our staff. It looks to be a collection of separate prints that were poorly bound, with many of the pages exceeding the size of the book, and having to be unfolded to view the full page.

On the Edge

Wilma Ervin’s On the Edge: The East Village captures scenes with exaggerating details from the East Village in New York, a city that is rough and scruffy, yet somehow beautiful. This book focuses on street art, graffiti, details of doorways, windows, and bill posters.

Find On the Edge on the UNT Library Catalog.

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