These non-posters by posterists provide a fascinating look into the creative process and visual practice of top designers. And these works are one-of-a-kind relics from the careers of lithographic luminaries.
12 1/2 x 19 1/4 in./31.8 x 49 cm
In this highly abstracted form, Josephine Baker might not be immediately recognizable—but her vibrant energy resounds in Colin’s use of bright colors and shading that reads as movement. “Colin continued to paint, sketch, and render Josephine Baker throughout his career… The images that Colin designed were a distillation of the movements and the abstracted figure that Baker herself created” (Josephine Baker: Image & Icon, p. 80).
37 1/8 x 57 3/4 in./94.3 x 146.6 cm
This young graffiti artist is certainly no stranger, but only once have we seen her wall-writing talents promoting the Menier company’s “Rialta,” the chocolate that you want to pick up when you’re in the mood for a little “crunch.” And here, in its pre-poster state, the seductive charm of the composition remains, making it one of the most appealing designs by this artist who frequently used children as his theme.
6 1/2 x 9 in./16.6 x 23 cm
This image is so rare that we have never seen it produced as a finalized poster—but it’s a charming relic of Cappiello’s always entertaining repertoire. Provenance: Atelier Cappiello, Devambez Archive No. 5.842.
19 x 28 3/4 in./48.2 x 73 cm
This is a rare preparatory work for Cappiello’s now infamous Cognac Monnet, with provenance from Jean Cappiello, the artist’s son. Founded by a group of local vintners in 1838 under the name “Company of the Vineyard Owners of Cognac,” Cognac Monnet did not obtain its current name until 1897 when Jean-Gabriel Monnet became the owner of the society. Their slogan “sunshine in a glass” is interpreted quite literally by Cappiello as a Bacchus-like nymph expresses adoration for the beverage. Provenance: Collection of Jean Cappiello.
7 5/8 x 12 in./19.3 x 30.5 cm
Chéret captures his model dressed for a night on the town and coyly twisting to face the viewer. It’s a lovely moment with both soft and detailed qualities—notice the folds in her leg-of-mutton sleeves.
13 34 x 19 1/4 in./35 x 49 cm
Mistinguett looks incredibly flapper chic in this painting by Gesmar. He’s included many lovely details: the golden auburn color of her pixie cut, the plume of smoke curling upwards from her pipe, a rosy cheek and cat eye makeup, pearls and jewels cascading down her neck and arm, and a vibrantly colored coat—or is she wrapped in a blanket? We like to imagine that the scene unfolded backstage just before Mistinguett wowed the crowds at the Moulin Rouge.
14 1/8 x 19 3/8 in./35.8 x 49 cm
One of the loveliest compositions created for Le Pôle Nord skating rink, this romantic design speaks to the elegance and sophistication of the venue’s guests.
61 3/4 x 46 5/8 in./156.7 x 118 cm
Throughout Loupot’s many designs for St. Raphaël, he constantly challenged himself to reinterpret the brand by refining and modernizing his designs. Here, in a maquette for a rarely seen poster, he adopts the warm, deep tones of the company’s Red apéritif, connoting the richness of the flavor with velvety visuals. Provenance: Atelier Loupot.
Each: 15 1/4 x 11 3/4 in./38.8 x 30 cm
Filippo Marinetti was an Italian ideologue, poet, editor, and founder of the Futurist movement of the early twentieth century. Marinetti, most noted for his authorship of the “Futurist Manifesto”—first published in the Paris newspaper Le Figaro—also published this important Futurist touchstone, “Les Mots en Liberté Futuristes,” into which these two plates—displaying the typographic method fervently espoused by that particular movement—were inserted, folded several times in order to make them fit into the small book. “The postwar years gave new impetus to the spread of modernist aesthetics to the more popular artistic mediums… Marinetti sought to give visual expression to the anarchic energy of war, the big city, and the rioting crowd… Setting out to destroy all literary and typographic rules, Marinetti called for the abolition of punctuation, the adverb, and the adjective to break down completely the traditional continuity and order of writing. The Futurists also had a particular interest in the medium of print, not just as a vehicle for their poetry but for the purpose of proselytizing their ideas on subjects touching all aspects of life—from sculpture to lust. Although they produced almost no typographically advanced posters, the revolution the Futurists initiated in typography proved fundamental. Through their influence on Dada and the Russian avant-garde they contributed to the development of the new typography in the 1920s” (Modern Poster, p. 20-21). This lot includes two of the four plates.
12 1/4 x 18 7/8 in./31.2 x 48 cm
Like a siren of the golden age of cinema, Mistinguett is outfitted in a lavish red robe with an exquisite fur collar. But don’t let her charming smile fool you—her peek-a-boo pose tells us that Mistinguett is up to no good. Would we have it any other way?
In-gallery viewing February 7-22 (daily 11am-6pm)