André Gill (17 October 1840—1 May 1885) was a French caricaturist and fellow artist to Daumier. Born Louis-Alexandre Gosset de Guînes in Paris, he studied at the Academy of Fine Arts. He adopted the pseudonym André Gill in homage to his hero, James Gillray. Gill began illustrating for “Le Journal Amusant”. He became however known for his work with the weekly four-sheet newspaper “La Lune” (from 1865 to 1868) edited by Francis Polo, in which he drew portraits for a series entitled “The Man of the Day”. After “La Lune” was banned, he worked for the periodical “L’Éclipse” from 1868 to 1876, as well as for “Le Charivari”.(Wikipedia 2009).
Daumier had numerous encounters with Gill, strongly advising him against becoming a caricaturist and to avoid being involved in the daily production of prints for the papers. Gill did not heed his advice and besides the above newspapers, he also became involved as a contributing artist for “La Lune Rousse”. On February 18, 1877, he did a disarming, mocking caricature of Daumier’s famous “Rue Transnonain” (DR135). The historic facts of this famous massacre can be read in www.daumier-register.org under the information given for DR135.
In his lithograph André Gill paid tribute to Daumier. In his own style he repeated the theme some 40 years after Daumier’s original work was published. Gill’s mechanically reproduced coloured pen lithograph, measuring like Transonain about 50 x 35 cm, shows Gill’s signature and the handwritten note: “cher maître Daumier”. The sword, which killed the man, reads “loi de 68” and the handle depicts the face of Napoléon III (with close similarities to Ratapoil, the King’s agent provocateur) responsible for the censorship laws introduced during that period. History is repeating itself.
We are happy to inform you that we are exhibiting both works in collaboration with www.daumiergallery.com together with a large number of other Daumier lithographs in a special exhibition. Should you travel to Switzerland, please do not miss the opportunity to contact us or www.daumiergallery.com and make an appointment for a private viewing of this interesting Daumier exhibition.