August 7, 2012 § 1 Comment
Prunier by Pierre Falize (1876-1953) is a jolly image of a fishmonger walking out of the sea with his fresh catch, ready to serve the public. The fish in his arms looks a little surprised, the scallop is already steaming, but what always catches my eye with this poster is the basket of oysters on his head.
To me, a skilled oyster shucker is like a good bartender. Friendly, quick and willing to share their knowledge. Perhaps to coax their patron to try new things, to give tem to permission to have more. Anyway, the jolly fellow on Prunier definitely looks like someone I would chat up upon ordering my first half dozen.
The text “Livre vite et bien” translates to mean “Service fast and good” and “Fin a Aout a mi-Juin” to “From late August to mid June” This relates to the fact that oysters were for many years only served in months with an R in them, when they were said to be at their peak. Oysters in the summer months can sometimes be soft and milky, and there was a myth that summer oysters could be poisonous. Many Atlantic oysters do spawn in the summer months, so it is possible that fisheries discouraged fisherman from catching them then to increase supply. Here on the west coast we have many varieties of oysters which are at their peak in the summer.
Lastly “Maree…. Cuisine” translates to “Tide, kitchen” the phrase from the tide to the kitchen meant that only the freshest fish, cooked, immediately upon it’s catch is served at Prunier.
Prunier was founded in 1872, as an oyster shop and bar at 16 Avenue Victor Hugo in the 6th Arrondisment of Paris. Over time, it grew to be a favorite spot for Americans and Russians to gather, as oysters were not yet a favorite dish of the French. In 1901, the Prunier family added a full restaurant, and continued to expand until in the 1920’s the two story restaurant covered almost one half of the street. In the gay 20′s, Prunier was host to over 1,000 customers per day, who consumed 17,000 oysters and 3-4 tons of fish daily. The restaurant is still in in business today.
Our Prunier poster is an original, printed in Paris in the 1920s. It is in very fine condition, mounted onto linen by our skilled paper conservator, to archival standard, and is ready to frame. The poster measures 84″ x 53″. Please call or email for more information.
Visit the restaurant’s website http://www.prunier.com/
Read more about the restaurant’s history http://www.jazzageclub.com/venues/prunier-restaurant/
Owner Vintage European Posters , established 1997
2201 Fourth Street Berkeley, CA 94710
January 7, 2012 § Leave a Comment
As a means of communication, the poster is a megaphone. It reflects the attitudes and enthusiasms of a period in history at high volume.
No one understands this better than Elizabeth Norris, owner of Vintage European Posters, a Berkeley based dealer of original vintage posters. “You can have a visual experience of every time period of the past century when you spend time with vintage posters,” says Norris, “they deliver history with a palpable punch.”
Vintage European Posters’ showroom features 2012’s first show “Peace and Conflict in the 20th Century.” The show is organized chronologically. It begins with the decadence of the Belle Epoque Period when liquor flowed and posters were gilded with elements of Art Nouveau: flowing tendrils, seaweed, flowers.
It also features posters from both wars and the Art Deco Period.
The show ends with the expansion of commercial aviation and post war prosperity.
Peace and conflict in the 20th century runs through the month of January at Vintage European Posters showroom in Berkeley. The showroom is open three weekends, January 7-8, 14-15 and 21-22 as well as every Tuesday from 11-5. Vintage European Posters is always available by appointment as well. View the collection at www.vepca.com anytime.
Vintage European Posters 2201 Fourth Street in Berkeley, corner of Allston Way
Two blocks south of University, across from Wine.com
Open Saturdays until 6 pm, Sundays and Tuesdays from 11-5