Featured Artists: Honore Daumier (France 1808-1879)

I love Daumier and would collect a wall- full of his work if I had an office in government or university or law. Nobody yet measures up to his happy ridicule of the bourgeoisie, the government, politics and pseudo-classicism, and, strangely, it is still very inexpensive to collect. Unfortunately, it is time for me to part with two of my treasures:

The Fall of Icarus and The Minister of Surveillance under Surveillance.

Both are in excellent condition, exactly as I bought them in a little print shop in London in 1979 just after Norton Simon himself had gleaned every Daumier a day earlier but missed these two. I am selling them for $400 USD. Each. (Shipping is an extra 7 dollars for the packaging.)

“Fall of Icarus” from La Charivari / “Histoire Ancienne. “ (La Chute D’Icare) Slightly worn, crease down middle of newsprint on verso . 10×14 page

10×14 page from Actualities D#2908 “Surveilling the Commissioner of Surveillance” Newsprint with pencil “w/ix 51/2908 /(Newsprint on the verso) worn condition but perfect print of a timeless subject. Non?

You can read much about this artist on the Internet, so look around for the excellent websites dedicated to Daumier. I will say only that after mastering lithography in his early teens and a lifetime of making innumerable works for newspapers and magazines, galleries and friends, this printer, painter and sculptor went blind and died in a little cottage in the countryside lent him by his friend and fellow artist, Corot. Daumier was known in his lifetime as the “Michelangelo of caricature” and once spent six months in jail for his print of the king as Gargantua. Ah the French! For all their love of art and artists, they can be highly outraged. Even Flaubert went on trial for Madame Bovary.

“One of the most important men, I will not say only of caricature, but also of modern art.”-Baudelaire.

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