French Loterie Posters by Edgard Derouet and His Workshop

January 14, 2016 § Leave a comment

Edgard Derouet (1910 -2001)

 

Advertising posters are meant to catch the attention of the passerby. While bustling about on daily business, a pedestrian may absorb the message on a poster, but if distracted, may miss the message altogether. This is where images can trump words, and a familiar image can work it’s magic at a glance. Graphic artists have always strived to find a vehicle which effectively commands the attention of the ‘(wo)man on the street’. One French artist who was very successful at this is Edgard Derouet who designed a clever campaign to promote the French Loterie which, in short order, became instantly recognizable to all.

The French Loterie has a complicated history. King Francis of France debuted the Loterie Royale in 1539, however it was not popular until the 18th century. The money raised by the lottery was used for various government projects, to rebuild churches, and government funds. Public opinions shifted, and when the populace complained about the lottery as exploitive, it was banned. The lottery came and went, enjoying periods of popularity followed by closures. One such closure came in 1836. The lottery did not exist again until it was revived by the socialist government, in need of funds, in 1933.

Edgard Derouet was chosen by the state to create and execute a campaign to promote the Loterie Nationale because of his formidable reputation as a graphic artist. This was not a small task because there had been no lottery for almost a century, and the public needed to be persuaded to participate.

As a young man, Derouet had studied with famed posterist Paul Colin, and been a friend to Monaco poster artist Geo Hamm. He founded a magazine devoted to graphic arts, which featured the work of posterists AM Cassandre, Roger De Valerio and Jaques Nathan, and so he was on the cutting edge of design – in touch with trends and versed in the (short) history of the advertising poster. Derouet won an award for best poster of the year in 1936, and his work was exhibited at the International Exposition of 1937.

What image could convey the excitement of winning the lottery? This is the question that Derouet must have entertained when confronted with this demanding task. How about a man jumping for joy? And this is what Derouet designed. The client liked the figure because of its well tied tie, it’s neatness and its nationalistic look. The simplicity of the figure allowed the artist to elaborate on the settings in which he placed him.

The idea was clever, because the figure became familiar almost immediately. Like the Michelin man, the public smiled fondly on the little jumping man. Derouet had created a popular success. In 1939 the government planned an elaborate PR campaign for the Loterie, with 24 special drawings to be picked in different cities, and they tasked Derouet with communicating this placement with each poster. A couple of examples include the poster ‘weekend’ which depicts the jumping man as a traveler at a train station. This drawing was held at the train station Gare St. Lazare. “Parfums” was held in the South of France in the town of Grasse, which has long been associated with the perfumes they make.

WWII put an end to lottery drawings in France. After the war, Derouet became the commercial director of the print house Bedos and Cie, where he worked for 30 years. Derouet retired in 1980.

Loterie posters are light hearted and fun. Here at Vintage European Posters, we have sold them for almost two decades and seen clients hang them in groups with great effect. This past summer, Vintage European Posters Collector Elizabeth Norris found two separate stacks of lottery posters from after 1950. Visit our collection of Loterie posters, including many by Derouet at www.vepca.com

This post was written by Elizabeth Norris, owner of Vintage European Posters and edited by Kate Klingbeil, Print Specialist.

Vintage European Posters is a Berkeley based dealer of Original French and American Advertising Posters. Established in 1997, VEP now exhibits at 12 shows per year in California including Dwell on DesignPalm Springs Modernism, and the Hillsborough Antiques Show.

Our Showroom is located at 2201 Fourth Street in Berkeley, at the corner of Allston Way.

We are open most Tuesdays, and many other days. Our website is always up to date.
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Linen Backing and Poster Conservation

December 3, 2015 § Leave a comment

We are pleased to offer linen backing services for our clients here in our Berkeley Showroom. We handle hundreds of posters every year and can give estimates as to how much restoration is advised and what it costs. The turnaround is typically 6-8 weeks. We encourage you to bring your posters into the shop for examination and estimates.

What is linen backing?

It is a conservation method that has been used with posters for over a century.

Linen backing can flatten folds and creases in posters.

Today’s techniques utilizes 100 percent archival materials to stabilize and preserve vintage posters

Fragile posters are mounted onto a canvas backing with an acid free paper barrier between the poster and the cotton canvas.

The paste used in backing is an acid free vegetable cellulose paste which is water reversible.

Linen backing makes it possible to be handled without risking tears or further wear to the fragile paper

Once backed, posters can be restored. Some common restorations include piece in and color. Piece in uses old paper scrap to fill in paper losses. The addition is sanded to make it the same thickness as the poster, at which time it can be colored to blend in.

Restoration of color is done using acid free water color, watercolor pens, and colored pencils. Posters can lose pigment for a variety of reasons – folds, wear, sunlight and oxidation are some of them.

Optional additional services include washing, bleaching, and micro- trimming rough margins.

When is backing and restoration appropriate? 

When a poster has value, either monetary, historical, or sentimental

When a poster has been compromised in some way- torn, folded, water damaged

With advertising posters. Linen backing is the industry standard. However with rock posters and movie posters, linen backing is possible but some collectors frown on it.

4th lib before & after logo

This post was written by Elizabeth Norris,
Owner of Vintage European Posters
Founded 1997
Visit our collection of original advertising posters on the web
or in our showroom at 2201 Fourth Street in Berkeley, California

Poster References in the DeYoung’s current exhibition “Jewel City – Art from Panama Pacific International Exhibition”

November 17, 2015 § Leave a comment

 

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It is always a treat to find references to the ubiquity of posters in paintings. Attending museum exhibits which focus on the past 150 years often include both advertising posters from the period as well as art with life on city streets as it’s subject. If the viewer is attuned to posters, they can be spotted in some of these paintings and photographs.

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Panama Pacific International Exposition Poster (via Emphemerastudies.org)

In the current show at the DeYoung, the obvious poster is the one advertising the fair itself. As is the case with most world’s fair posters, they artist won a poster competition and their design was selected by a committee to advertise the Fair.

The winning design was by Perham Nahl and features the son of Jupiter parting the earth to reveal San Francisco in the background. The poster is quite small- measuring 13 3/8″ x 24″  and the color palette is subtle.

Devambez, André - La Charge (1902)

Andre Devambez – La Charge (1902) (via artandopinion.tumblr.com)

The poster within a painting which really struck me though was “The Charge” by Andre Eduoard Devambez. This painting, which is on loan from the Musee D’Orsay is apparently the most famous work by the artist. It features a street scence in Montmarte- a conflict between demonstrators and police, and is painted with an unusual perspective- as if viewed by the painter from above the scene. I was struck by the fact that the street in the scene was dotted with poster kiosks on both sides of the street, and that they serve to punctuate the street. And then I realized the artist’s name was Devambez. Possibly this was a coincidence, but the last name is also that of one of the very famous poster printers, which we have catalogued on numerous occasions. The placard at the DeYoung mentions that Devambez’s family printed the catalogue of French art on view in the French Pavilion at the Exposition. So my hunch that this artist would be from the very same family who printed the legendary posters of Leonetto Cappiello among others grew stronger.

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Veuve Amiot by Leonetto Cappiello 1922 (via vepca.com)

It turns out that the Devambez printing house was established long before the hey day of Cappiello. Eduoard Devambez was himself an artist, and his print house was highly respected for it’s work with engraving, copper plate etching, typography, lithography, calligraphy, book binding, stamping and won awards at world’s fairs. Devambez was awarded the prestigious work of printing presentation books, menus for visiting foreign monarchs and became the official engraver for the Royal family of Portugal.

It is Eduard Devambez’s son who created “The Charge” in 1902. While I was studying the painting at the DeYoung, a docent led tour came into the gallery, and we learned about how the paintings for the French Pavilion at the Pan Pacific made their harrowing journey to San Francisco.

Of course a worlds’s fair- like an Olympics- is planned for by its host city and by participants for years ahead of the actual event. The art slated for display at the French Pavilion had already been discussed, when war broke out on July 28, 1914.

Much of World War I was fought on the open ocean, so transporting goods across the Atlantic was tricky. Munitions and supplies were the priority, and those shipments were targets. France was eager to keep its word to display art at the Pan Pacific Exposition, and to show the superiority of their artists. This, coupled with the fact that many precious artworks in French museums were being crated up and hidden from possible theft, made sending the works oversea an even greater imperative.

So how was it done? The allies made use of what was called the Christmas Ship. This ship was packed with clothing, toys and food donated by American children and intended for British and Belgian children as a goodwill gesture. The ship was unloaded at a number of ports in Europe. Amid great secrecy, the Christmas Ship was loaded with precious works of art destined for the 1915 Pan Paciifc Worlds Fair in San Francisco. Because of the opening of the Panama Canal, the journey was shortened by 8,000 miles.

This blog post was written by Elizabeth Norris, principal of Vintage European Posters. Please visit the Vintage European Posters website www.vepca.com to view our extensive collection of original advertising posters.

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August 27th, 1916: Italy Declares War on Germany

August 27, 2014 § Leave a comment

August 27th, 1916: Almost one hundred years ago today, Italy declared war on Germany despite its policy of neutrality during World War One. In 1915, a year before this declaration of war, Italy agreed to the terms of the Treaty of London which secured large tracts of land to Italy. The Triple Entente (Britain, France, and Russia) wanted to weaken the Central Powers (Germany, Austria-Hungary, Ottoman Empire, and Bulgaria) by opening up a southern front and they believed the Treaty of London would persuade Italy to fight on their side. They were correct with this prediction.

Unfortunately, Italy didn’t exactly achieve a great military success. Italy, weary after the victorious Italo-Turkish War of 1911, entered WWI a mere five years later and suffered a crippling defeat at Caporetto against an Austro-Hungarian army, losing 300,00 men. On top of this humiliation, Italy was snubbed at the conclusion of the war with the Treaty of Versailles and its exclusive negotiations.

Orth, "Banco di Roma," 1920. 46 x 31. Very Fine Condition.

Orth, “Banco di Roma,” 1920. 46 x 31. Very Fine Condition.

Above is Orth’s “Banco di Roma,” a poster encouraging Italians to subscribe to the 1920 National French Treasury Loan. The female on the right is Marianne, a national symbol of the French Republic, signifying liberty and reason. She reaches towards the Colosseum, showing the political alliance of France and Italy. The text beneath her translates to “It is the ashes of death which creates the homeland.” This quote is by the French poet and politician Alphonse Lamartine, who helped found the French Second Republic and was known as a spokesman of the working class. In an effort to pay for war debt and rebuild Europe, Orth sends a message of rebirth after destruction and the power of collaboration.

 

Check out our upcoming show titled “A Call to Action; Posters of the First World War” which includes over 100 original World War I propaganda posters. The Show will run from September 13- September  23rd at our gallery at 2201 Fourth Street, in Berkeley, CA.

This post was written by Nicole Garson, Intern, UCB class of 2016 and edited by Elizabeth Norris, Proprietor of Vintage European Posters

Our Shop is Open Tuesdays-Thursdays from 11-5 and select weekends.
2201 Fourth Street, Berkeley Corner of Allston Way

Please call 510 843 2201 or email vintage posters@vepca.com to confirm hours.

Visit our collection on the web at vepca.com

The Centennial of the Declaration of the United States’ Neutrality

August 19, 2014 § Leave a comment

August 19th: One hundred years ago today, President Woodrow Wilson announced the United State would remain neutral in World War One, yet nearly three years later this fact would not hold true.

"Join! The Greatest Mother," Lawrence Wilbur, Fine Condition.

“Join! The Greatest Mother,” Lawrence Wilbur, Fine Condition.

Tensions arose between the United States and Germany in 1917, two and a half years after the United States’ declared neutrality. Trade was interrupted with America’s close economic partner, Britain, as Germany began to sink ships entering in the war zone near the Britain. When Germany declared unrestricted warfare against all ships in this zone, and the Lusitania passenger-carrying boat was sunk by Germany (which defiled international law), America’s involvement in the war was imminent as public opinion towards Germany turned from neutral to sour. In a desire to ensure international peace, Wilson asked congress to declare a war “to end all wars.”

In the poster “Join! The Greatest Mother,” the American Red Cross is personified by a pleading nurse who gazes down at a globe. Wilbur’s message could be interpreted as the responsibility of world peace and the deliverance of aid rests on the United States’ shoulders as they are the last driving force to end the war.

Check out our upcoming show titled “A Call to Action; Posters of the First World War” which includes over 100 original World War I propaganda posters. The Show will run from September 13- September  23rd at our gallery at 2201 Fourth Street, in Berkeley, CA.

This post was written by Nicole Garson, Intern, UCB class of 2016 and Elizabeth Norris, Proprietor of Vintage European Posters

Our Shop is Open Tuesdays-Thursdays from 11-5 and select weekends.
2201 Fourth Street, Berkeley Corner of Allston Way

Please call 510 843 2201 or email vintage posters@vepca.com to confirm hours.

Visit our collection on the web at vepca.com

 

World War One and Trench Warfare; the Centennial of The Battles of Frontiers

August 7, 2014 § 1 Comment

August 7th: One hundred years ago today, The Battle of Frontiers began between France and Germany, characterized by the trench warfare and stalemate of World War I.

"Souscrivez pour la Victoire," M. Richard Butz, 1916. Fine Condition.

“Souscrivez pour la Victoire,” M. Richard Butz, 1916. Fine Condition.

The Battles of the Frontiers was a series of battles held on the Western Front during WWI, beginning with the Battle of Liège on August 4th, 1914. These battles kicked off the characteristic stalemate and deadly trench warfare of the First World War. The German armies followed the meticulously drawn up Schlieffen Plan which called for a quick defeat of French forces in the West just in time to move to the East to defeat Russian forces. The great miscalculation was the amount of time it would take to defeat France; Germany also underestimated how long it would take Russia to mobilize their forces (Russia took a mere 10 days to mobilize rather than six weeks). As a result, Germany was forced to diffuse their armies and fight two fronts at the same time. Germany’s failure in a quick defeat against France resulted in the building of trenches, creating a war of attrition where attacks with improved weaponry caused an immense loss of life.

In this French poster calling for French citizens to purchase war bonds, a winged women symbolizing Victory with the French flag flies over a sea of dead German soldiers. Following the winged figure is a sea of soldiers carrying the numerous flags of the Allies.

 

To see more posters like the one pictured above, check out our upcoming show titled “A Call to Action; Posters of the First World War” which includes over 100 original World War I propaganda posters. The Show will run from September 13- September  23rd at our gallery at 2201 Fourth Street, in Berkeley, CA.  

 

This post was written by Nicole Garson, Intern, UCB class of 2016 and Elizabeth Norris, Proprietor of Vintage European Posters

Our Shop is Open Tuesdays-Thursdays from 11-5 and select weekends.
2201 Fourth Street, Berkeley Corner of Allston Way

Please call 510 843 2201 or email vintage posters@vepca.com to confirm hours.

Visit our collection on the web at vepca.com

The Centennial of the UK’s entrance into World War One

August 4, 2014 § Leave a comment

August 4th: One hundred years ago today, after Germany broke Belgium’s neutrality, the United Kingdom was forced to join World War I by declaring war on Germany.

"Women of Britain Joan of Arc Saved France" Bert Thomas, c. 1918. Fine Condition.

“Women of Britain Joan of Arc Saved France” Bert Thomas, c. 1918. Fine Condition.

The United Kingdom, a foundational force for the Allied Powers during World War I, declared war on Germany on August 4th, 1914 in response to Germany’s violation of the Treaty of London (1839) which guaranteed the protection of Belgium’s neutrality. The German chancellor at the time supposedly exlaimed his disbelief over how a war between Germany and the United Kingdom could be started over this “scrap of paper.” Bert Thomas, the artist of the image pictured above, was famous for his British wartime propaganda posters; in this case, the poster was meant to encourage civilians, namely female civilians, to purchase war bonds in support of the war against Germany. The symbolism behind this image is complex; his reference to Joan of Arc and an image of a female soldier suggest a few ideas about his methods for persuading the public. Referencing a religious icon of their ally’s history creates the notion that supporting Britain through war bonds is a religious duty and women, too, like the female soldier waving a sword, can heroically contribute in a time where women’s contribution to society was limited to their expected roles.

 

Check out our upcoming show titled “A Call to Action; Posters of the First World War” which includes over 100 original World War I propaganda posters. The Show will run from September 13- September  23rd at our gallery at 2201 Fourth Street, in Berkeley, CA.  

 

This post was written by Nicole Garson, Intern, UCB class of 2016 and Elizabeth Norris, Proprietor of Vintage European Posters

Our Shop is Open Tuesdays-Thursdays from 11-5 and select weekends.
2201 Fourth Street, Berkeley Corner of Allston Way

Please call 510 843 2201 or email vintage posters@vepca.com to confirm hours.

Visit our collection on the web at vepca.com

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