Item Details

Marceau, Marcel. [Henry Miller]. Autographed & Illustrated Letter Signed. [SMILE AT THE FOOT OF THE LADDER].

Washington: M.M. 1973.

Marcel Marceau. Original Autographed Letters. "Like the clown we go through the motions, forever simulating, forever postponing the grand event. We die struggling to get born. We never were, never are. We are always in the process of becoming" - Henry Miller," - Epilogue. "The Smile At The Foot Of The Ladder, "I have designed my style pantomimes as white ink drawings on black backgrounds, so that man's destiny appears as a thread lost in an endless labyrinth." - Marcel Marceau. Marceau, Marcel. [Henry Miller]. AUTOGRAPHED AND ILLUSTRATED LETTER SIGNED. Washington, 1973 8vo., on blue tinted onion skin. A wonderful rambling letter & as much original art from Marceau in French scrawled across 13 pages [with small humorous illustrations on many pages], all about asking Miller for the rights at whatever price to make a film from Miller's "Smile At The Foot Of The Ladder". [Translation In part] " First of all, I send you my best wishes for the year 1973. . . with all the silences and heart of the Bip [flower]. I saw the drawing in your book. Thank you for including it. / It will always remind me of those unforgettable moments in Berchères. . . I understand you. Here's what it's about, I would absolutely want to produce the movie version of / "The smile at the foot of the ladder" / To put it simply, tell me if the book is still available for me to create an adaptation that will follow your Spirit and your heart. I am ready to buy the movie rights! You know I am just like you. . . Complex. . . but / without ambiguity and loyal!. . . It's better to answer to God than to his saints. Also, from you - to me- in all honesty. . . give me the movie rights to the "smile". I wait in silence like a peasant on a mountain. . . I would really like / my first movie to be the "smile at the foot of the ladder". If the rights are taken and no one does anything with them like the American who wouldn’t go anywhere, then please give them to me. . . tell me the cost and I will be in Los Angeles in May. / Right now, we are touring universities and big cities in the United States. You book is really beautiful! I admired your drawings!!! One word from you / would make me happy if you want, Unhappy if it pleases you. . . Your pale Bip [flower]. . . who loves you like a brother / [Elaborate Bip Clown Illustration] Henry Miller With the faithful heart of the Bip [Flower] Always M.M. / If you agree, we will deal with the formalities in Los Angeles in June - (my heart is beating like a little girl's) / Faithfully with my heart and my friendly hand Your Bip Marcel Marceau" Marceau's interest in Miller’s novella "The Smile At The Foot Of The Ladder" is obvious - the book is the story of a clown named Auguste, whose one-dimensional fame causes an existential crisis of identity and a Siddhartha-like quest for spiritual meaning. Time Magazine review from 1948 adds: "Auguste's search for his true identity is a dangerous quest and it ends fatally, but not before he has discovered that ‘perhaps he was all right just as he was . . . The mistake he had made was to go beyond his proper bounds.’ " Karl Orend’s book, Henry Miller’s Angelic Clown: "Reflection on The Smile At The Foot Of The Ladder" (2007, Alyscamps Press) is a thorough analysis of Miller’s 1948 short novel. In his view, "Ladder" may not contain a writer character named Henry, but the clown named Auguste is reflective of the spiritual and philosophical core of Henry Miller. "More than any other text Henry Miller wrote," writes Orend, "The Smile At The Foot Of The Ladder gives us a concise and allegorical vision of the point towards which all his writing was aimed Apocatastasis and the attainment of Samadh." Published in 1948, Smile provided a spiritual ladder or bridge between his Colossus Of Maroussi (1941) & Big Sur & The Oranges of Hieronymus Bosch (1957). Marcel Marceau (1923 - 2007) was an internationally acclaimed French actor & the most acclaimed mime in the world, most famous for his persona as Bip the Clown.

Item #30923 Price: $7,275.00
Marceau, Marcel. [Henry Miller]. Autographed & Illustrated Letter Signed. [SMILE AT THE FOOT OF THE LADDER]. Marcel Marceau, Henry Miller.