This is a rare French Belle Epoque period advertising poster for Job rolling papers, created by Jules Chéret in 1895. This is a quintessential Chéret style Belle Époque period poster, featuring a beautiful, elegantly dressed woman as the focal point of the image. The carefree, happy, charming women that Chéret featured in his posters came to be fondly referred to as “Cherettes.” This Cherette, in her yellow dress, pops from the blue background that immediately surrounds her in the center of the image. Around the blue is a cream color that composes the primary color of the background. A bold red “Job” is seen at the top of the poster, picking up the color of this Cherette’s hair and lips. At the very top of the image it says, “Smoke Job papers” and at the bottom, “or quit smoking.” This poster features all of the hallmarks of a Chéret masterpiece: bright lively colors, dynamic lines, and a dominant sense of gaiety and vitality.
This poster by Chéret is not only a rare and usual size, but is also made even more unique by the lacquer that is seen over the image. This lacquer indicates that this poster was intended to be hung indoors, as smoke caused more damage to advertisements than the natural elements posters were exposed to outdoors.
Chéret is a celebrated painter and lithographer who is considered to be the father of the modern poster. Chéret studied both the techniques of various artists, past and present, by visiting the masters seen in Parisian museums and learning the technology of lithography at school. This combination allowed him to become a master artist and brilliant technician who’s work was seen all over the streets of Paris. Chéret’s poster’s became hugely popular and illuminated the streets of Paris. During La Belle Epoque, Chéret caused a color revolution, allowing a sense of fun, fantasy, laughter, and gaiety to dazzle the streets of Paris in a way that had not existed before. In 1890 he was awarded the Légion d’honneur by the French Government for his outstanding contributions to the graphic arts.
Today works by Jules Chéret are in the collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg Russia, The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, MOMA, Musee d’Orsay in Paris, and The National Gallery of Art, to name a few.
Printed by Imp. Chaix (ateliers Chéret) Rue Bergere, 20, Paris 1895.
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