Notes on this edition: In 1988, artist Charles Hobson created an limited edition artists’ book titled Flaubert & Louise: Letters & Impressions. The contents of the book include letters written by Gustave Flaubert to his lover Louise Colet. Also included are excerpts from Julian Barnes’s novel Flaubert’s Parrot in which he fictionalized Colet’s voice in a chapter titled, “Louise Colet’s Version”. Hobson merges Flaubert’s real letters with Barnes’s fictional text to create a sense of an exchange between the couple.
The item presented in the photos is a prospectus for the artists’ book prepared at the time of the publication of the work in 1988.
A copy of the original artists’ book currently sells for $3,000 on Hobson’s website. Chronicle Books also issued a spiral bound book by Hobson titled Paris Encounters that contains a section devoted to his artistic creation Flaubert & Louise. Charles Hobson writes about his creative process for this work in an exhibition catalog in 2002: http://www.charleshobson.com/Hobson_Catalog.pdf