Never before translated into English, Rainer Maria Rilke¬ís fascinating Letters to a Very Young Painter , written toward the end of his life between 1920 and 1926, is a surprising companion to his infamous Letters to a Young Poet , earlier correspondence from 1902 to 1908. While the latter has become a global phenomenon, with millions of copies sold in many different languages, the present volume has been largely overlooked. In these eight intimate letters written to a teenage Balthus¬ówho would go on to become one of the leading artists of his generation¬óRilke describes the challenges he faced, while opening the door for the young painter to take himself and his work seriously. Rilke¬ís constant warmth, his ability to sense in advance his correspondent¬ís difficulties and propose solutions to them, and his sensitivity as a person and an artist come across in these charming and honest letters. Writing during his aged years, this volume paints a picture of the venerable poet as he faced his mortality, through the perspective of hindsight, and continued to embrace his openness towards other creative individuals. With a new introduction by Rachel Corbett, author of You Must Change Your Life: The Story of Rainer Maria Rilke and Auguste Rodin , this book is a must-have for Rilke¬ís admirers, young and old, and all aspiring artists.