Mar 09, 2023 - Sale 2629

Sale 2629 - Lot 7

Estimate: $ 1,000 - $ 1,500

PAUL BERTHON (1872-1909)


19 3/4x25 1/2 inches, 50x64 3/4 cm. Chaix, Paris.
Condition A: pencil notations at left edge. Mounted on board. Framed.

Paul Berthon was a disciple of Eugene Grasset as well as his friend and admirer. And while he adapted all of the principles he learned from his master, he executed them with his own personal flair and became a prominent Art Nouveau artist in his own right. This became apparent in 1897 with his poster for the Salon des Cent, which exhibited his fully mature style. For that poster, while very much in the style of Grasset's 1894 Salon des Cent poster, Berthon depicted a woman quite differently from Grasset. Grasset's image is cold, rigid and austere; Berthon's is sensuous, generously revealing the woman's neck and shoulders. For Livre de Magda, the woman is completely nude, which would have been unthinkable for Grasset. Arwas describes it as "A lovely nude nymph amidst umbelliferous plants calling a flock of white pigeons to her while diagonal Grasset-clouds drift across the horizon" (Arwas p. 97). The colors are warm and sensuous and the overall effect builds a remarkable monochromatic feeling. One of Berthon's masterpieces. Arwas p. 97, Wine Spectator 35, DFP-II 66, La Femme 83.