In 1963, Broodthaers abandoned poetry to focus on visual art. In this work, he makes reference to this transition by revealing the graphic, nearly abstract quality of the Symbolist poet Stéphane Mallarmé’s canonical poem of the same title. On the cover, Broodthaers exchanged the names of Mallarmé and his publisher with his own and those of his galleries, and the word poéme with image. Inside, multiple black bars, whose dimensions and arrangement correspond exactly to that of Mallarmé’s text in the 1914 edition, are repeated on each page, turning writing into image.
Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings
Signature: in black ink on the colophon: "M.B."
Inscription: numbered in black ink on the colophon: "81/90"
Vendor: Andrew Roth Inc.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection," October 25, 2016–January 30, 2017.