Lautrec, Henri de Toulouse

1978 Modern British Museum Exhibition Poster, From Manet To Toulouse-Lautrec - Toulouse-Lautrec (after)

$175.00
  • 1978 Modern British Museum Exhibition Poster, From Manet To Toulouse-Lautrec - Toulouse-Lautrec (after)

Lautrec, Henri de Toulouse

1978 Modern British Museum Exhibition Poster, From Manet To Toulouse-Lautrec - Toulouse-Lautrec (after)

$175.00

Date: 1978
Size:  20 x 30 inches
Notes: Poster
Artist: Toulouse-Lautrec, Henri (after)
Information: For more details, please call 514 656 3301

About The Poster: This is the original exhibition poster for the exhibition "From Manet to Toulouse-Lautrec" held at the British Museum in 1978. The image is a print by Toulouse-Lautrec of May Belfort, an Irish actress whom Lautrec was very attracted to. "The work was commissioned by the young Irish performer for her show at the Petit Casino that year. Her act was an odd one; she dressed up like a little girl in flouncy dresses and baby bonnets and sang in English with a feigned lisp. Her songs had simple lyrics that were packed with double entendres (one of her more popular songs ran, “I’ve got a little cat…I’m very fond of that”, and she often held a black kitten in her arms for the most provocative numbers. Her act was not particularly well-received; one critic stated that she looked like a frog. Toulouse-Lautrec, however, was rather taken with her. He highlights the sexual nature of her performances with the presence of red; though she commonly wore pastel-colored dresses, he portrays her here in the same crimson color Helene wears in Reine de Joie. May Belfort was not a prostitute; she had no associations with the Moulin Rouge or Le Mirliton, the primary sex-peddling Montmartre cabarets. Her act was quite charged, as evidenced by her provocative lyrics and her stage character, described by Gisele Atterberry as a “naughty little English girl”. Her bright red dress is what catches the viewer’s eye; placed squarely in the center of the poster, the flat plane of crimson links her directly to la ceinture rouge and its questionable goings-on. The scarlet gown makes her artistic sexuality impossible to ignore, and thus Toulouse-Lautrec implicates her alongside him in the erotic underworld of Montmartre’s artists." (Source: Princeton University Blogs, Toulouse-Lautrec's Posters: Incriminating Montmartre, http://blogs.princeton.edu/wri152-3/s06/borowitz/may_belfort_and_paul_sescau.html)