15 DAUMIER, H. Louis Philippe. / Virtual Rare Print Fair 163


Title: DAUMIER, H.
Title: Blaye. Pélagie. La force. (Plate 267 from La Caricature.)
Published in: Paris, ca. 1832
Description: Man sits atop three cages, with his back to us, holding the keys to the cages. On top of three cages, Louis-Philippe sits with his back to the viewer in order to preserve anonymity: however, the toupee, whiskers, and pear shape reveal his identity. The three cages represent the Parisian prisons of Blaye, Ste. Pelagie, and La Force. The King, as jailor, grips the keys in his hand. Imprisoned in the upper cage is the Duchesse de Berri, daughter-in-law of Charles X and the mother of five-year-old legitimist pretender Henri V. Her aspirations for her son's ascension to the throne threatened Orleanist rule, so she was incarcerated.
The print mocks the fact that Louis-Philippe actually was in favor of prison reform. For artists of the time who had been imprisoned for their political caricatures, the prison theme was imbued with a sense of the loss of freedom in a society that supposedly valued liberty for all.
After the July-Revolution and the reinstatement of the Freedom of the Press, CHARLES PHILIPON (1800-1862) recognized the growing desire of the public for information. In 1830, he founded the political satirical illustrated paper LA CARICATURE.
PHILIPON’s brother-in-law GABRIEL AUBERT was responsible for the distribution and sale of the publication.
LA CARICATURE can be considered the first political and satirical French newspaper of that period combining politics and contemporary art. In total, there appeared 251 editions of LA CARICATURE from Nov.4, 1830 to Aug.27, 1835 featuring 524 caricatures of various artists, of which 91 by Daumier. Each edition fluctuated between 750 and 2’000 copies.
Reference: Magazine article USA Today (Society for the Advancement of Education), Vol. 135, August 2006
Dimensions: 10.2 x 8.3 inches. 26.0 x 21.0 cm.
In original colours.
Condition: Original hand coloured lithography printed on white wove paper without text on the verso. Paper very slightly age-toned. In very good condition.
  • Number: 1630020
  • Dealer: Speculum Orbis Nauticum

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