1925. A set of four original costume drawings in pen, ink, and gouache for a 1925 Opera Gaston production. Each is signed "George Barbier" and three are also dated "1925." The four exquisite illustrations depict two women and two men in period 19th century costumes. The two women are dressed in gorgeous full gowns. One is in a white ball gown with a multicolored floral design. The other woman is in a daytime costume, with a dark blue full-length shawl and a charming bonnet. The two men are dressed in corresponding attire - one in evening dress and one in a long fur trimmed coat wearing a top hat. Each of the illustrations has handwritten notes on their backs, primarily in pencil, that seem to refer to characters and stage information. Each is numbered with Barbier's name and their numbers - 4, 13, 17, and 20. The drawings are in near fine condition with the slightest aging to paper borders. They are on sheets of paper measuring 8.5 x 10.26 inches. The figures are about 8.5 inches high.The French artist George Barbier (1882-1932) was one of the most sophisticated and prolific illustrators and designers of his era. His Art Deco creations using the techniques of pochoir printing were both modern and classic, highly stylized, and extremely colorful. He became extremely popular after his first exhibition at the age of twenty-nine, and was widely sought after to design theater and ballet costumes, illustrate books, and most notably to produce haute couture fashion illustrations. He was somewhat forgotten after his early death at age fifty, but there has been strong renewed interest in his work in recent years. This began with an exhibition at the Fortuny Museum in Venice in 2008, "George Barbier: The Birth of Art Deco," which was the first posthumous exhibition of his work. ORIG/080516.
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. Original caricature done in ink on paper. The caricature celebrates the opening night of The Happy Life, a play by Louis N. Parker and Murray Carson, staged at the Duke of York’s Theatre, London, in 1897. It depicts Parker (standing atop the Duke of York’s column), Carson, and Max (top hat and wasp-waisted coat) himself drinking champagne. Both Parker and Carson were important dramatists at the turn of the century; Beerbohm would later collaborate with Carson on a one-act “curtain-raiser” in 1914, The fly on the wheel. Inscribed “Best wishes in a great success. December 6 ’97” and signed “Max.” Unrecorded; not in Hart-Davis’s catalogue of Beerbohm’s caricatures. In near fine condition and nicely framed. 20 x 25.4 cm. ORIG/011216.