December 26, 2004
Of the many fakes and reprints of Daumier lithographs on the market, the better quality reprints have been produced by the MOURLOT brothers. You can see here a section of DR 1169, reprinted by this company. In contrast to so many other copies, they clearly mentioned their name underneath the print, which is the ethically correct way of doing it, thus avoiding that their copies were being sold as original lithographs.
Jules Mourlot bought the old printers house of Bataille in 1914. After his death in 1921, the name of the company was changed to Mourlot Frères. The company had a reputation for good quality lithographic work. They published lithographs by Matisse, Picasso, Mirò, Chagall etc. The collaboration with the editor Tériade in 1937 saw the appearance of VERVE, one of the most important artistic publications of the period, resulting in beautiful prints by Mirò, Chagall, Braque made available to the public at reasonable prices. During this time, also some of the Daumier reprints were offered by Mourlot. While they cannot be considered “originals” they still are beautiful copies of an even more beautiful original.