La Pantomime/Les Arts

Artist: Jules Cheret French (1836-1932)

Title: La Pantomime/Les Arts

Plate: Pant.

Description: Condition A.
Original colour stone lithograph 
Printed by Imprimerie Chaix, Paris 1891 
Backed on linen. 
Reference: Chéret, 76-79 p.230-231; Broido, 60-63; Maindron 1896, p. 53-56;
Shipped rolled via Fedex. 

Certificate of Authenticity.

Sheet Size: 35 in x 50 in / 89 cm x 127 cm

Price: $5400.00

This is one of the series of four decorative posters, entitled "The Arts". This is the third, simply entitled "The Pantomime". For the others (smaller versions) see PL.193, PL.197, PL.205The set of four sold for $ 41,400 US (4) Poster Auctions International, N.Y. May 1998.


"Such a pleasure to now have a poster from what I believe is perhaps Cheret's greatest works. His Les Arts. Simply referred to as the four Arts; Pantomime, Music, Dance, and Comedy. Freed from the need to advertise an event or product, Cheret shows us his truly magical genius by bringing pure joy to life on paper, something very few artists could do and none more often than the prolific Cheret with over 1000 designs. Les Arts, and in this case Pantomime, is in my opinion the high point of Jules Cheret's brilliant career." (Greg)

A photo by Atget, 1908, of a Paris street scene on the Rue du Plat d’Etain, featuring a Cheret poster just above the handcarts. Bibliotheque Nationale de France, Public Domain

"A jester, a joker, and a mime lift a young lady into a reverie in a symbolic representation of "Pantomime." This is a single panel in what was originally a four-panel series by Chéret celebrating the Muses. It's clear Chéret has a double purpose here: also celebrating his own mastery of color lithography. Chéret only designed two decorative series during his entire career, a rarity among the major Art Nouveau artists." (Rennert)

Jules Cheret, The Father of the Poster.


"Maindron makes it clear that it was Cheret who invented 'placards decoratifs'…there is nothing to say about these designs other that they are perfect". Abdy calls these four decorative panels "triumphs of colour and printing"). Being freed in them from having to sell a product, Cheret let his imagination soar- and these light-footed nymphs are the first clear examples of what was to adorn the walls of Paris for the next decade; the unabashedly hedonistic, carefree spirits that became known as 'Cherettes'" (Rennert)