Gallery of prints for sale

Thursday 20 July 2023

Charles Chaplin’s etching, “Les Bulles de Savon”, 1867

Charles Chaplin (aka Charles Joshua Chaplin) (1825–1891)

“Les Bulles de Savon” (Soap Bubbles), 1867, etching after Charles Chaplin’s painting in the Luxembourg Museum (see, plate 278 from the fifth volume of prints produced by the Société des Aquafortistes (Society of Etchers), printed in Paris by Alfred Cadart (1828–1875) (as lettered in plate), before/after the change of publication details to the printer, Auguste Delâtre (aka Auguste Marie Delâtre) (1822–1907) and publication by Cadart & Luquet (fl.1863–1867) in “Eaux-Fortes Modernes”, vol. 5 (1867).

Etching on laid paper with wide margins.

Size: (sheet) 25.5 x 20.1 cm; (plate) 15 x 11.7 cm; (image borderline) 12.1 x 9.3 cm.

Numbered in plate above the image borderline: (right) “278.”

Lettered in plate below the image borderline: (left) “Ch. Chaplin sculp.”; (centre) “LES BULLES DE SAVON.”; (right) “Imp. A. CADART, Paris.”

Beraldi 36 (Henri Beraldi 1886, “Les Graveurs du XIX Siecle”, Paris, Librairie L. Conquet, vol. 4, p. 92, cat. no. 36).

The British Museum offers a description of this print with the earlier/later printer and publisher details:

Condition: a strong and well-printed impression with wide margins in a near pristine condition with no tears, holes, folds, abrasions, significant stains (note that the back of the sheet is slightly dusty) or foxing.

I am selling this small and beautifully executed etching from the genre of vanitas prints—mindful that bubbles are often used in images to symbolise the notions of life’s transience, brevity and the spontaneity of death—and prints that draw upon the symbolism of women and their labours—mindful that the distaff shown here leaning on the spinning wheel has a history of being a symbolic weapon of women while the spinning wheel is a key symbolic tool of women’s industry—for AU$212 in total (currently US$141.70/EUR128.21/GBP112.86 at the time of this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world, but not (of course) any import duties/taxes imposed by some countries.

If you are interested in purchasing this wonderful etching—to my eyes it has the allure of a Vermeer! —please contact me ( and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

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