15 October 2009

following & jackets:The Private World of Yves Saint Laurent & Pierre Berge

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Would you follow? She is not au courant, She is Second French Empire. I am fascinated by all the details of her dress. Take a moment and enlarge the image for a better look. Do you stop to take a second or third look?




Can you judge a book by its cover? Can you afford not to? It always interests me when books are released for the European/UK market with jacket covers so very different from the cover for US release.

Witness THE PRIVATE WORLD OF YVES SAINT LAURENT & PIERRE BERGE.



COVER I
UK/ European




“The quintessence of very grand and highly personal French taste.”

~Le Figaro


&
II


“As he did with fashion, Yves seized at one moment in time, a taste that was in the air, only to show his mastery. During the 1970s exoticism and Marrakech were currents in the air and St. Laurent became the authority. He was interested in Art Deco before it became fashionable, even before Andy Warhol and Karl Lagerfeld . . . St Laurent’s and Bergé’s taste is an expression of a culture and is always a story. When they decorated a house it was no longer an ordinary house: it became a story to tell.” ~Jacques Grange



Which do you prefer? Let me know & the book is yours.
& Yes, of course there is a slight hitch-

Leave a comment telling me which cover you like & why-
& become a public follower of LITTLE AUGURY sign up just under the ABOUT ME section to the right.

if you are already following LITTLE AUGURY- bless you my child- do leave a comment & the book could be yours too.

There will be two winners-winning their preference of covers. I can't wait to hear these comments.


Notoriously shy, the designer and Bergé lived in luxury, surrounded by incomparable collections of furniture and art. From the serene interiors of their apartment on the Rue Babylone to the incandescent beauty of the Villa Majorelle in Marrakech, Bergé and Saint Laurent’s sensibilities come alive. Taken after Saint Laurent’s death in 2008, Ivan Terestchenko’s photographs capture these exquisite surroundings in full, showcasing nineteenth-century French décor, important paintings by modern and Romantic artists, and masterpieces of furniture, sculpture, and silver ranging from the Renaissance to the Art Deco era. Though the homes presented here are now empty, The Private World of Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé is a testament to a rare union of passion, elegance, and supreme connoisseurship.
(from Amazon)

I am constantly amazed at the quality & content of fellow writers of the blogging world- I follow le style et la matiere religiously- What a beautiful place. Illuminating. Read her evocative story about the book covers here & the cover in France with the French text. Merci.


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36 comments:

  1. I've seen some of the interiors and the US cover seems so much representative of YSL/Berge. I guess in France they are so annoyed with all that dripping multi-Louis French-ness that they yearn for a more modern, staid sensibility. I'd be happy to have a nice slice of that black and white floor, up the rococo console, all the way up to the tippy top of the moulding. Lovely.

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  2. What a generous giveaway! I was shocked to see the different cover while in Europe -it's SO different! It could be an entirely different book!
    I have to say I prefer the American cover better, it's more interesting to me personally: but both are incredibly beautiful!

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  3. The American cover is SO much more interesting with the painted wallcover, the mirrored paneling, the checkered floor and all the carefully displayed antique bric-a-brac. This room has been thought through & no doubt items moved & removed to perfection. I really WANT to go into that room.
    The Euro cover is just plain boring. White walls & some objet's d'art. Pretty much run-of-the-mill Classicisim. Doesn't look like much attention was paid to this corner of the room.
    PICK ME! PICK ME!!

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  4. To start with, a picture from the past, a woman in what must have been garb that was particular for the time or a costume for clearly she is made up. Losages around acorn drop fastenings, a headdress with flowery ear muffs (?) - how to judge this cover? Judge not and let her work her spell? Would love to know her origin. Is she one of a long line of eccentric ancestors? You could be proud!

    The different versions of book covers is a subject that intrigues -a flashy US bestseller takes on an artistic or intellectual look in France! Both YSL-PB covers are appealing. I vote for the 1st one because it seems more austere and promises the secrets on the INSIDE, like a French house that faces a courtyard and doesn't cry out its splendor to passers-by. (I note both are books with English titles. So we haven't arrived at the real differences yet. I have a photo for you. Vive la différence! You inspire me!)

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  5. Gaye, I hadn't noticed the left arm and hand - I'm touched.

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  6. lovely essay about fashion....we can find that fashion is only a window to the human mind

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  7. lovely essay about fashion....we can find that fashion is only a window to the human mind

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  8. My preference is for the European cover. It is simplicity and perfection. Truly classic.

    The American cover is beautiful but "over the top" and likely appeals to our voracious consumerism.

    Thank you for a wonderful blog. I look forward to it every day.

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  9. There is a clarity about the European book cover that is very appealing to me. On the American cover the title is lost in the opulence of the room. The European cover is simple and gives just a hint of the riches inside the book.

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  10. From a design point of view, the European cover is much stronger visually. The strong title, nice contrast in color. The American cover obviously more cluttered though one could argue it is an invitation into the "private world" with the photograph looking down the hall. That said, I prefer the European cover. It reflects YSL's ability to edit like no other, finding the best of the best. Less is more as demonstrated here. Every object of art is stunning and the architecture serves to compliment.

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  11. I prefer cover #1 because to me it's less cluttered. I like the details on the tall door, the door hardware up top and the hint of a chandelier. To me it's more elegant and makes me want to see more pictures.

    I saw the YSL documentary and I have to say both looks were represented. Some shots had very elaborate beautiful decor and pattern (the shots with Berge), and others more austere (the ones with YSL in them)

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  12. I prefer the European cover, primarily because the large font and prominence of the title - the phrase Private World stands out.

    I've noticed that when some design books are re-published in soft cover they often change the book cover photo too (i.e, Interiors by Design and Old House New Home)

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  13. Cover I is my choice. The symbolism is terrific--the strength of the bronzes, the daring nude, the specter of mirror and those blocked, closed doors! Does it get any more "private?"

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  14. I love the US Cover - I don't think it speaks to consumerism, but a lifetime of collecting and surrounding ones self with things that make you happy - things that call to mind a specific occasion or person - I think that there is an obvious difference when something has simply been staged - many "things" purchased to achieve a look, rather than the american cover which to me, speaks to objects that have been thoughtfully purchased or given to a specific person.

    I would love to have a copy of this book - what a great give away!

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  15. I prefer the book behind door number 2. Love the graphic of the black and white floor (have in my own home, not marble, alas) and the way the graphics pull you in into an intimate setting. I understand the curated beauty of Number 1. Haven't evolved enough to love it. This book is one its way to me. Hope the fact that you're giving it away doesn't mean you were less enchanted with its reality.

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  16. I like the simplicity and elegance of the UK/Eurpoean cover, but the US cover really captures a small slice of the majestic collection that YSL and Berge obtained together in their home. From the little I have seen, his home is as strikingly beautiful as his clothes. I can't wait to see what dreamworld lies in the pages of this book, regardless of the cover.

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  17. Great comments- I have added a link to this from le style et la matiere with an evocative discussion of the covers. If you are interested-and I know you are check it out. Her blog is always in my sights.

    A heartfelt thanks to the Blushing Hostess for providing a link to this post- Blushing is another favourite.

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  18. I saw the Saint Laurent & Pierre Berge book in Paris when I was visiting my friend (Paris Originals). I was going to buy it but I didn't have room in my suitcase and the shipping was astronomical. I was so happy when I found out it was being published by a UK publisher and that it would be available here in the US!

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  19. Michele from BostonOctober 16, 2009 at 11:28 AM

    Good morning! I think the FRENCH COVER is more sculptural in nature and it has a sense of poetry - black, white, texture, the contrast between the two bronzes of two very different civilizations. It also is representative to me how the French, like no one else, can do THE MIX. The mix that makes you linger on every photograph. Why wasn't this cover chosen for the US version? We're wimps, I suspect and don't want to be involved in the controversy over the Chinese animal heads (2) that caused such a brouhaha at the time of the auction. No offending our debt holders, I say! Thanks for the post.

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  20. Fascinating to see the views. I think both are beautiful. Even if I voted for the most graphic cover, I love the colorful American cover too. It makes luxury aproachable.

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  21. This sort of thing creates the same affect as fingernails on a blackboard! I love the dramatic white cover of the European edition. You are drawn into the image and the room buy the scant red drape in the painting. But no, that would simply be too subtle for the lowly American audience. Publishers have the mistaken idea that we are less sophisticated and needs to be beaten over the head to buy a book. This month, French chef, Stephane Reynaud's new book was released in America. In France, Canada, England and Austraila it bore his title, Ripailles, but in America the title was changed to French Feasts. We are always getting bizarrely translated titles, and garish images when, truth be told, we get it. Well, I could go on and on... but when I see that light door reflected in the gold framed mirror, I can feel Saint Laurent standing behind it.

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  22. Oh, I'm a glutton, trying for another book from you! I think the US cover speaks more to the palimpsest world of YSL & PB, though the title is all squished. The French cover is very beautiful and poetically spare, but does it converse with what is inside the book? Cover and content ought to sing in concert.

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  23. Although they are both lovely jackets, I prefer the clean simplicity of the European cover which hints at its richness. The American cover is lovely with all of its colors but almost too busy.

    I came by way of The Blushing Hostess and am a new follower.

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  24. First things first: the photograph is wonderful. A carte de visite of Madame Bovary taken in a provincial studio for her lover Rodolphe? Look at the care with which she displays her dress. What's clear is that this woman is going places. Maybe not where she thinks...

    As for the covers, I find the American version more intriguing. I'd like to sit in the room depicted on the British cover and contemplate those bronzes, but the American cover makes me wonder what's just around the corner. The movement in the wallpaper, the foliate sconces, the tile floor, and the legs of the fabulous French table pulls me in. Can't wait to see what's inside.

    Thanks for the tip about le style et la matiere, which is fabulous. And as a third option, the cover of the French version on her site is deluxe.

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  25. While both interiors are artistic, the expression in the European edition more aptly reflects classicism and appreciation of the human form. The minotaur, the classical bronze, and the male portrait all suggest the collection of two aesthetes, who fully appreciate the history of art and design. White panelling sets off the collection and the door hints at more treasures within. The other cover fails to impress to the viewer the owners of such a discerning eye.

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  26. Where is Magnaverde when we need him to weigh in on this?

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  27. Home- go to my lastest post-which is an update of this one & see the original publishers French cover! I think you will like it. GT

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  28. Late commenting, but after seeing the third french cover, I have to say I strongly prefer it, and its title; a tantalizing invitation to open the book, rather than showing everything out on the sidewalk. I haven't been inside a bookstore in France for five years, but I know that in an American bookstore, the cover has to stand out against dozens of others, many rather appalling.

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  29. Hi again G...I posted a few pics of the interior of Chateau Gabriel. Though I usually prefer a tad simpler style myself it is quite an extravagant folly, no shrinking violets there. Still thinking US cover covers it more...but of course I haven't flipped through the book! Trish

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  30. Well...I still have to say, after finding and posting the HG '05 photos of Chateau Gabriel, that although the US cover is "noisy", it is a more accurate foreshadowing of the melange inside. But perhaps these photos only represent a small portion of the book? Trish

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  31. The US cover bears a strange likeness to Michael Smith's Elements of Style cover and for that reason alone it would be my least favorite. Really, we know who imitated whom but the similar wall covering and the gilt console table is just so distracting coupled with a title font that is way too small. The European cover is far more appealing as it is cleaner, compelling and more far more intriguing. By the way, what a great topic you chose for this post.

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  32. It's an interesting discussion. When I was going to buy the book I thought that I like the american edition cover more. But in Hong Kong big book selling stores had only British edition. I though, well, it doesn't matter since the contest is the same. I think now that both cover are beautiful. Then I ask myself: what room I would like to be in? Definitely both! It depends on the mood I'm in :-)
    PS. don't put my name in the "hat" since I have the book already.

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  33. Yesterday my vote was for UK cover for its sparse yet intriguing design - but now that I see the French cover - it is the winner - the private life - two sides of same bust seen against bold red wins hands down. I have always noticed that American covers, whether design, art, cooking books or novels, are always so obvious - much less interesting - it seems that Americans want everything spelled out ... or so the publishers think...

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  34. Number II is my choice - must more tempting! It makes me want to learn more about the hand-painted wallpaper (probably deGournay), then there is that statue, the ceramics, etc. What happened to all the Art Deco? That cover opens up a whole new world of opportunity to learn!

    Susan

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  35. the euro-release cover is vastly more straight-forward and handsome than the american one, which looks like english victorian clutter. i'm sure that from a less tortured angle, that dining room and its treasures would be intriguing, but here it is a hollywood freeway pile-up, mirror imaged, yet. what's in the art director's mind? m

    michael/bagelbrookefarm

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  36. thanks for all the wonderful comments- I am happy to say My Notting Hill and DMC have won the 2 books! Touch base with your addresses. G

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