Henri De Toulouse-Lautrec (french, 1864-1901):
Ambassadeurs. 1892. 56 1/8x37 5/8 . Edw. Ancourt, Paris. An original French colored poster seamed at center from two parts. Bruant and Lautrec shared a mutual admiration for each other, and Bruant was the first performer to ask Lautrec to design a poster for him. The result is one of the simplest and most powerful music hall posters ever designed. Created with the four primary colors and Lautrec's cherished green, it depicts Bruant in his costume, black hat, red scarf and black cape coming out of the wings, where we can see three lights and the black shadow of a stage hand. At Bruant's insistence the poster was plastered all over Paris, despite the theater manager's intense dislike of it (he referred to it as "a revolting mess"). The bold, forceful design of the cabaret star captures the performer's famed arrogance. Bruant went on to become Lautec's biggest client, commissioning three other posters from him. The poster was drawn on two stones but "with some impressions printed on one (like this example) and some on two sheets of paper." (Adriani p.23). Adrian 3, Deltell 343. Wittrock P 4, Maitress 1900 p. 48. *Note: The hat, scarf, coat, and eyebrows have been color enhanced.