Poetry collections were the perfect medium for combining texts with images that served to illustrate them.
Many of the poets who wrote poetry collections, either in verse or in prose, were also the illustrators of their work: Apel·les Mestres, Santiago Rusiñol, Adrià Gual and Alexandre de Riquer were the main artists.
They believed that the book was the ideal medium for a work of Total Art. These poetry collections, some of which contained sheet music, became some of the supreme works of Modernist publishing design in Catalonia.
The illustrations expressed the symbolist world of poems, a world filled with sprites, nymphs, fairies and little creatures. Thus drawings, poems and music were combined to create a new sensory experience.
Apel·les Mestres i Oñós (Barcelona, 1854-1936)
Liliana. Poema. Oliva: Vilanova & Geltrú, 1907
Photoengraving on paper