"I do not intend our book to be only for children, and I really mean our book. The sometimes very relaxed language of your sketches will interest adults just as well, and we will be very flattered, dear little Baltusz, you and me. Mitsou will be, I assure you, your first intoduction to painting."
- Rainer Maria Rilke to the young Balthus
Balthus was ten years old when he told, in forty wonderful drawings, the story of his life with his cat Mitsou.Writer Rainer Maria Rilke, a friend of the family, dazzled by the young painter’s talent and sensing the importance of these drawings already representative of the Balthusian universe, wrote the preface and supported the publication of this volume.Ivan Pericoli and Benoît Astier de Villatte, also cat lovers who have always adored Mitsou, decided to commission from Monsieur Huin, a master typographer from their printing house (the last that uses typographic presses), a new edition that perfectly duplicates the 1921 original.The cover made of bulky paper, a raw, light and thick paper, slightly rough, is backed by hand (a luxury today), making the book more supple and pleasant to leaf through. The texts are composed with lead typesetting on antique linotype machines, and printed on typographic presses using an ink of true deep black that intensely contrasts with the white paper. The crushing of the paper, a characteristic of typographic printing, enhances the life and energy of the drawings. The timeless and intense charm that this collection emits is what makes Mitsou a classic of surprisingly modern allure.
Printed using lead type on the Astier de Villatte letterpress.
Made in France.