First edition. Volumes 1-8 and 10-12 (of 15). Volumes 1-3 folio, volumes 4-12 quarto. Volume 1 bound in contemporary blue cloth with titles in gilt to the upper board and spine, all 12 issues bound in with their original wrappers. Volumes 2-6, 8 (part 1, 2, and 4), and 10-12 in their original parts, in original wrappers (volume 2, part 1 as loose sheets). Volume 7 bound in contemporary half vellum with titles in neat manuscript and with the original wrappers bound in at the rear. Printed on hand-made paper, page edges untrimmed. Numerous black and white illustrations and plates throughout, including many reproductions of work by Edward Gordon Craig and others (early stage designs, plans and costumes). A very good set, the bound volumes square and firm with minor bumping to the extremities, those bound in wrappers with a little chipping and loss to the extremities and wear to the spines. The contents with some occasional scattered foxing and two previous owner's bookplates to the front pastedown/endpaper of volume 7 are otherwise clean and bright throughout. Also included are volumes 9-12 and 14-15 (plus an index volume) in facsimile, published by Benjamin Blom, New York in 1967 (near fine in publisher's original blue cloth).
A near complete run of this important theatrical periodical edited by the English modernist theatre practitioner, director, stage designer and theatre theorist, Edward Gordon Craig (1872-1966). After settling in Florence in 1907, Craig directed a great deal of his creative energies into the development of "The Mask", creating what became the first international theatre magazine, and one of the most cutting-edge expressions of modernist thought and practice as regards to the theory and artistry of the theatre. An innovative and influential production, its publication continued sporadically for twenty years (it was first published monthly, then quarterly, with volume eight consisting of pamphlets, and volume nine of just one lone issue). As Craig's son Teddy later explained, "The format of The Mask was governed by the size of the paper, which was hand-made, cheap and came from near-by Fabriano. The typography was dependent on what founts of type the printers had to hand...The layout was based on an early copy of Vitruvius that he had picked up for a few lire." (Edward Gordon Craig: The Story of His Life p.231).
Stock code: 21084