The twelve months of the year, woodblock print and chromotypography in colour, designed by Eugène Grasset in 1894 and issued separately without text (only with the names of the months) as decorative graphic art. Size (each scene): approx. 20,5 x 15,5 cm.
In 1896 the illustrations were used for an Art Nouveau calendar by the Parisian Maison de La Belle Jardinière, given to customers at the checkout. All figures, designed to advertise women’s clothing, are models of elegance. Each month shows a young woman gardening, in a dress appropriate for the time of year, with a pattern of the corresponding zodiac sign.
Eugène Grasset (1845 – 1917) firmly believed that modernity should be solidly rooted in the art of the past while “drawing new strength from nature”. Here the longstanding technique of woodblock engraving is combined with the new technology of chromotypography. Each print connected linear calendar time and the cyclical pattern of the seasons. The female figures drew on both photographic models and allegories from sixteenth- and eighteenth-century iconologies.
La Belle Jardinière was a Parisian department store located on the banks of the Seine at the Pont Neuf. It offered ready-made fashion for a new middle-class clientele and was very successful for decades. The company was acquired in 1972 by Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy.
Price: Euro 3.450,-