AN ORIGINAL WOODBLOCK REDISCOVERED AFTER 144 YEARS.

2018-09-12T09:25:55+00:00

We are delighted to inform the Daumier community that the Daumier Register has acquired the original woodblock, engraved by C. Maurand based on Daumier’s design for publication in “Le Monde Illustré” which appeared under the title:

Le Boulevard des Italiens. (Dessin de M. Daumier.)

Work catalogue numbers:

DR 6002

Rümann 869

Bouvy 923

Signatures:

lower right: C.MAURAND

lower left: h.Daumier

appeared:

Monde illustré 08.02.1862 i/ii

Meynial 1920 ii/ii

Front view

Detailed front view

Side view

Reverse side

Reverse side: label

Reverse side: stamp by “Le Monde Illustré”

Reverse side: stamp by “Kieszling, Paris”

 

LE MONDE ILLUSTRÉ.

This journal appeared on a weekly basis. Founded in 1856 it was sold also in 2 large annual volumes. Between 1863 and 1869 Daumier contributed 35 wood engravings to this journal; not in full size pages but still in rather large measurements. In the various years the following number of Daumier prints was published: 17 in 1862, 4 in 1863, 2 in 1862, 6 in 1867, 5 in 1868, and 1 in 1869. One needs also to add the smaller print which had appeared in “Paris guide” and was used here again in 1867 in connection with an advertisement. The beautiful “Fauteuils d’Orchestre” a print executed by the engraver Lepère after a water colour by Daumier als has to be added. This was shown at the great Daumier Exhibition at Galerie Durand-Ruel of 1878, arranged shortly before Daumier’ death.

According to Bouvy, five of those prints which had originally appeared in the ”Le Monde Illustré” were re-printed in 1865 in the “Le Journal Illustré”, a weekly paper in-folio, founded in 1864. Further 20 prints were published in the weekly “La Presse Illustrée”, a journal founded in 1860.

THE MEYNIAL EDITION.

Jules Meynial was the editor of the bi-weekly publication “La Presse Illustrée”, which later appeared only once a week. The paper was founded in 1860. He succeeded in purchasing in the early 1900s some of the rare wood blocks used to print the wood engravings “after Daumier”, which were published to illustrate the “Monde illustré”.

In 1920 he used these blocks to edit a separate group of some 36 prints on Japan paper without text or number. He offered these prints under the title: “H. Daumier, tirage unique de trente-six bois”. The print titled “Affreux macadam !” as well as the print which had appeared in “Paris Guide” were not used by Meynial, most likely because he did not find the wood blocks on the market. The entire set was completed by adding “Les Fauteuils d’Orchestre”, engraved after a Daumier painting, by Lepère, and by “Amateurs d’Estampes”, engraved by F.L. Schmied, after a watercolour from the Camondo collection in the Louvre.

As engravers we find Lepère, Étienne, Maurand, Peulot.

The collection of Meynial prints on Japan paper found at the Metropolitan Museum of Art carrying the collector’s mark “FLS” also shows that each print was numbered in pencil. It seems the total edition of these Meynial prints may have amounted to 75. A separate edition of only 25 pieces was published on China paper.

It seems that Meynial’s successors must have sold the wood blocks some time between 1900 and now, since one occasionally finds single pieces on auction in France. The 36 blocks have not been kept together and are spread out in various collections all over the world. We have been able to locate about 50% of them. The wood block of DR 6002 today is part of the Noack Collection (the Daumier Register) in Switzerland.