Loose_leaf. Not a great deal is documented (at least on the internet) about the life of Mexican Surrealist artist Carlos Coffeen Serpas. His mother, the Salvadoran poet Lilian Serpas, is more well known. Both Carlos and his mother appeared as odd, enigmatic characters in the 2008 novel Amulet by Roberto Bolano. Apparently Carlos Coffeen Serpas lived in and traveled through the United States during the 1960's and 1970's. A college professor at the University of West Georgia purchased this folio of art prints from him during one of those travels through the small town of Carrollton, Georgia, west of Atlanta in the late 1960's or early 1970's. He claimed he bought them to help out the artist who apparently was often broke and needing money.
The folio itself appears to be homemade from a kind of thin pressed chipboard (like a thin cardboard), with the El Signo title painted in black on the front cover with a eye symbol decoration above the title. The artists name is printed in ink neatly in the top left corner. The closed folio measures 16 1/2" x 12 1/4".
Inside the folio are:
-two trifolded tryptichs (three paneled art pieces), with prints mounted on pale blue card stock. The first is titled Lost Cainitas Triptico and is signed in blue ink by the artist on the front panel print. The second has the title Judith hand written in ink on the front panel. The closed tryptichs measure 14 1/2" x 9 1/4". Open they measure 14 1/2" by 27 3/4".
-ten single loose pages of prints and text measuring 13 3/8" x 9 1/4" and include the following titles, among others: Fray Angelico, Presagio, Rain, Cristoforo Colombo C'est Arrive. Several of the titles are faint and difficult to read, so they are not listed.
-nine individual folded paged of prints and text, most measuring around 13" x 18" when unfolded, with some small size variation. Titles include: El Senor Tiempo, Cero, Icaro, Pax No. 1 Homenage A Un Perro Muerto Por Un Bombardero Liviano En El Ano de Gracia de 1936, Huitzilopochtli, Korea '55, El Retrato, Tauromaquia, Maternidad.
Overall, the prints are in very good, well-preserved condition, with some faint toning or the occasional spot of foxing.
Altogether a rare, unusual collection of prints and texts by a lesser known Surrealist artist, signed, and enclosed in what appears to be a handmade and handpainted folio. Very good. Item #6309