Cahiers d’Art, one of the world’s most distinguished publishers of the visual arts, announces its plans to republish the long-out-of-print and highly sought-after Zervos Picasso Catalogue. Known by many as simply the Zervos, after Cahiers d’Art founder, Christian Zervos, the catalogue is comprised of 33 volumes with over 16,000 paintings and drawings and represents a lifetime of collaboration between Zervos and Picasso.
Cahiers d’Art will make the Zervos available in English translation for the first time in its history, in addition to the inclusion of corrections to the original catalogue prepared together with Picasso Administration. The publisher further announces Sotheby’s as the worldwide distributor of the Zervos Picasso Catalogue, in addition to Sotheby's offering the legendary Cahiers d’Art revue and other Cahiers d’Art publications to its global audience. The publication will be available on 15 December 2013, and pre-orders can be made through Sotheby’s at zervos.sothebys.com.
Cahiers d’Art was founded in Paris in 1926 by Christian Zervos and became renowned not only for producing the definitive Picasso catalogue, but also the most exquisite publications illuminating early 20th century art. Cahiers d’Art and Zervos established relationships with the most important artists of the 20th century. The concept was revolutionary in its day; Cahiers d’Art was at once a publishing house, a gallery and a journal. The journal, the Cahiers d’Art revue, brought together a striking layout, abundant photography and writers like Ernest Hemingway and Samuel Beckett. Cahiers d’Art ceased publication in 1960 and its books, journals and catalogues became highly sought after by art collectors and book collectors worldwide. The Cahiers d’Art legacy is being continued by Swedish collector Staffan Ahrenberg, who acquired the publishing house, the rights to all of its publications, its archives and gallery in Paris in 2011.
One of the most significant assets in the Cahiers d’Art archive is the Zervos Picasso Catalogue. With its earliest volumes dating from 1932, complete sets of the Zervos are extremely rare. The revitalization of the Cahiers d’Art imprint and the subsequent republication of the newly updated Zervos Picasso Catalogue, to be made available in separate English and French editions, promises to make the work of the 20th century master more accessible to a new generation of collectors, dealers and scholars.
“Christian Zervos dedicated his life to Picasso, and it is our great honor to continue the Zervos/Picasso story and legacy. I think it is essential for the Zervos to be back in print and available to collectors, scholars and the trade,” said Staffan Ahrenberg, current owner of Cahiers d’Art.
"We are thrilled to be associated with Cahiers d'Art’s legendary history as well as their very exciting future under the stewardship and vision of Staffan Ahrenberg," commented Tobias Meyer, Worldwide Head of Contemporary Art at Sotheby’s. "There is incredible potential in the return of their tradition of partnership with artists, which we have already seen in their initial collaborations with Ellsworth Kelly and the Calder Foundation, and we are thrilled to help them reach an audience of the world's most discerning collectors. The re-issuing of the Zervos is particularly exciting - every serious collector of Picasso will want this pivotal reference work, which is also a collector's item in its own right."
Sotheby’s will be the exclusive worldwide distributor of the print version of the new English and French editions of the Zervos Picasso Catalogue. The Zervos will also be available at Cahiers d’Art’s gallery, in the publisher’s original location since its founding in 1926, located at 14 rue du Dragon in the heart of Saint-Germain-des-Prés in Paris, and on its website cahiersdart.fr.
The new editions of Cahiers d’Art maintain the values and practices associated with the legacy of founder Christian Zervos, who built direct relationships with many of the most important artists of the 20th century, and insisted always on the highest standards of production quality. On the occasion of its relaunch in October 2012, Staffan Ahrenberg published the first edition of the journal since 1960, featuring a new work by Ellsworth Kelly on its cover.
Born in Sweden, Staffan Ahrenberg maintains a long family tradition of collecting art. His father, Theodor (‘Teto’) Ahrenberg (1912–89), built one of the largest collections of modern and contemporary art in northern Europe, including a significant number of works by Picasso, Matisse and Le Corbusier. In 2011, Staffan Ahrenberg acquired the legendary publishing house and gallery, Cahiers d'Art, and the rights to all of its publications, including the 33-volume Zervos Picasso Catalogue.
Ahrenberg has assembled a world-class team to revive Cahiers d’Art, including editorial board members Samuel Keller, Director of the Beyeler Foundation and Chairman Art Basel, and Hans Ulrich Obrist, renowned art curator and Co-Director of the Serpentine Gallery. The company has opened an additional gallery space dedicated to editions at 15 rue du Dragon and has prepared a full slate of publishing projects including the continuation of the Cahiers d'Art journal, catalogues raisonnés, standard and limited edition books and prints. Each project is the result of direct collaboration with the artists represented.
Sotheby’s has been uniting collectors with world-class works of art since 1744. Sotheby’s became the first international auction house when it expanded from London to New York (1955), the first to conduct sales in Hong Kong (1973) and France (2001), and the first international fine art auction house in China (2012).