À toute épreuve, with text by the French poet Paul Éluard and original woodcuts by the Catalan surrealist Joan Miró, is a triumph of twentieth-century book art. The publisher, Gérald Cramer, first approached Miró with the idea to illustrate Éluard's book of poems in 1947. Miró cut more than 230 woodblocks over a period of nearly eleven years to complete the project. In addition to traditional woodcut, he also used the technique of collotype-wood blocks collaged with various natural and manufactured materials-to add distinctions of texture and form to his designs. Early into the project, Miró wrote to his publisher "…I have made some trials which have allowed me to see what it was to make a book and not merely to illustrate it. Illustration is always a secondary matter. The important thing is that a book have all the dignity of a sculpture carved in marble." The result was a brilliantly inventive and harmonious interweaving of Miró's amorphous abstract imagery with Éluard's evocative poetry.