Jules Laurens (aka Jules Joseph Augustin Laurens) (1825–1901)
“A Twilight Landscape” (aka “Un Paysage Crépusculaire”), 1855, after a painting by Victor Hugo (aka Victor Marie Hugo) (1802–1885), printed and published by Lemercier & Cie (fl. 1827–1899) with three verses from Victor Hugo's “Les rayons et les ombres”.
Based on the date of this lithograph (1855), I suspect that the scene may have been around Normandy as at that time Laurens, along with several other artists from Paris, set off on a trip “towards Normandy” to pay homage to Victor Hugo. According to Léon-Honoré Labande (1910) in “Jules Laurens: ouvrage illustré d'aprés les oeuvres de l'artiste” (Paris, H Champion), the visit went well despite the Laurens’ trepidation:
(transl.) “… when Victor Hugo had cast his eyes on the sketches of the portfolio that our artist carried with him, the ice was entirely broken. ‘This is our common language,’ said the illustrious writer. ‘What joy you give me, Sir, by resuscitating before me the aspects of this dear country of France! Ah! the adorable jagged silhouettes and the good winding alleys of these excellent Norman towns! Like you, I saw them. What memories do you awaken in me!’ (p. 84; see https://archive.org/details/juleslaurensouvr00laba/page/84/mode/2up).
Lithograph printed in black ink on buff chine collé on heavy wove paper with a partial oval blind stamp in lower centre: " LE SALON/ 9 RUE MAZARIN".
Size: (sheet) 36 x 27.1 cm; (image borderline) 22.8 x 17.4 cm.
Numbered on plate above the image borderline: (right) (the number is not clear).
Lettered on stone below the image borderline: (left) “Victor Hugo pinx:”; (centre) “Imp. Lemercier, Paris/ Alors dans les jardins sous la brume enfouis/ Je m’enfoncai, rèvant aux jours évanouis,/ Tandis que les rameaux s’emplissaient de mystère./ (le rayons et les ombres)” (Transl.: "So in the gardens under the mist buried / I sank in, dreaming of the vanished days, / As the twigs filled with mystery. / [Rays and shadows]"); (right) “J. L. lith.”
Blind stamp at lower centre: “LE SALON/ 9 RUE MAZARINE”, within oval.
IFF 24 (Département des Estampes 1930–, “Inventaire du Fonds Francais Après 1800”, Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale de France, cat. no. 24); Beraldi (not described) (Henri Beraldi 1885–92, “Les graveurs du 19e siècle; guide de l'amateur d'estampes modernes”, vol. 9, Paris, L Conquet, pp. 59–61; see https://archive.org/details/lesgraveursdu19e09berauoft/page/n67/mode/2up).
The British Museum offers the following description of this print:
“Landscape with in the centre foreground a figure standing on a river bank, and beyond the stream running through a forest; after Victor Hugo. 1855 Lithograph on chine collé” (https://www.britishmuseum.org/collection/object/P_1900-1231-1325).
Condition: a strong impression in near pristine condition with no tears, holes, folds, abrasions, stains, foxing or signs of handling. The sheet has been trimmed along the lower margin as the oval blindstamp is only partially visible.
I am selling this poetically luminous lithograph, after the design by the almost legendary Victor Hugo, showing a solitary traveller contemplating the sun setting in tree-lined wetlands, for a total cost of AU$242 (currently US$188.85/EUR154.67/GBP133.04 at the time of this listing) including Express Mail (EMS) 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 exceptionally beautiful lithograph in near pristine condition, please contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.
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