Artist: Henri Bellery-Desfontaines French (1867-1909)
Title: L'Illusion (The Illusion)
issued by L'Estampe Moderne
Issue Number 5, September 1897.
Printed by F. Champenois, Paris.
Blindstamp lower right in margin.
Signed in the stone lower left.
Presented in 16 x 20 in. acid free, archival museum mat, with framing labels. Ready to frame. Shipped boxed flat.
Certificate of Authenticity.
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Sheet Size: 12 in x 16 in 30.5 cm x 40.5 cm
L'Enigme, by Bellery-Desfontaines
also for L'Estampe Moderne
Henri Bellery-Desfontaines was a French Art Nouveau painter, decorator and illustrator renown for his posters, lithographs, tapestries, furniture, bank note designs, typography, and other works of decorative arts. He is thought to have began his artistic training under the tutelage of Luc-Olivier Merson. During his years as a student, he began to illustrate magazines. In 1895, drawn to illustration, and he started to produce work for publications such as L'Image, L'Estampe Moderne, and L'Almanach des Bibliophiles. In the same year, the Salon des Artistes Français hosted one of his tapestry designs.
In the 1900s, Paris was the perfect place for a group of young artists influenced by artistic currents like neogothic style or symbolism. Most of them began as painters, switching later to decorative arts attracted by the ideas of ever-present art and total art. Henri Bellery-Desfontaines was a member of this group.
Bellery-Desfontaines gradually achieved notoriety as an ambitious decorative artist, designing tapestries and furniture adorned with ornate floral and vegetal motifs for wealthy patrons. He also was an important fine artist and printmaker of his epoch, painting portraits of Yvette Guilbert and Jean Mounet-Sully. Bellery-Desfontaines died young, at age 42, leaving a vast production of unfinished artistic works. (bellerydesfontaines.com)
Not unlike the Maitre de L'Affiche series, L'Estampe Moderne was a portfolio printed between 1897-98, published by Imprimerie Champenois, Paris, contained 24 monthly portfolios, with four original lithographs in each. Each commissioned only for this series. Some of the contributing artists included Mucha, Rhead, Meunier, Ibels, Steinlen, Willette and Grasset.