AUGUSTE HERBIN (1882-1960) BAL DE LA GRANDE OURSE. 1925. 46 1/2x30 inches, 118x76 cm. Kaplan, Paris. Condition B: repaired tears through top and bottom edges, some affecting text and image; bubbling, abrasions and restoration in margins and image. The emigrant Russian artistic community in Montparnasse was very active starting in the years before WWI. Every year, in order to raise money for their union, they hosted a large ball which was one of the highlights of the Paris avant-garde season. The list of the places where one could purchase tickets reads like a "Who's Who" of the Paris Galleries of the era. In 1925, the ball was named the "Bal de la Grande Ourse" (the Big Dipper). Herbin was a very early Cubist who went on to found the Abstraction-Creation group with Dutch painter Piet Mondrian and Belgian sculptor Georges Vantongerloo in 1931. Even in this early poster we see that his design is very architectural and minimal, utilizing only two colors (certainly for budgetary reasons). The design shows a constellation in the middle of a geometrical system. The typography is integrated into the image with all of the practical information presented at the bottom. A very rare piece, it is likely that not more than 200 were printed. Avant Garde p. 122, Weill p. 191, Art Deco p. 103, Müller-Brockmann 182.