ALPHONSE MUCHA (1860-1939) SOCIÉTÉ POPULAIRE DES BEAUX - ARTS. 1897. 24 3/4x18 inches, 63x47 3/4 cm. F. Champenois, Paris. Condition A-: minor repaired tears in margins. Framed. Founded by a lawyer, Edmond Benoit-Levy, the Société Populaire des Beaux Arts' "aim was to disseminate art among the people by means of 'projections,' [and it] was one of Mucha's favorite causes. He believed that art should be enjoyed by everyone, not just the rich, and so the idea of arranging slide shows in which art works would be seen by wide audiences appealed to him . . . The young artist in Mucha's design is being inspired by the Muse with preternaturally buoyant hair, she symbolizes what the Society is doing and makes a fine example of Mucha's custom of combining real people with mythical guiding spirits" (Lendl p. 136). Mucha, seduced by the cause of the Société, treats his graphic allegory with incredible grace, style and erotic appeal. He depicts a poor student paying attention to a heavenly muse leaning on a projector, within a decorative border. Rennert / Weill 23, Lendl p. 137, Brno 21, Mucha Grand Palais 24, Darmstadt 46, Mucha / Henderson 69, Mucha / Bridges A20, Triumph des Jugendstils 29, DFP-II 641.