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Artists in the Spotlight: Honoré Daumier
Portrait von Honoré Daumier In many law firms they hang on the wall: framed caricatures of almost unsympathetic to grotesque, but also frighteningly timeless and realistic looking people in legal gowns. These in their style unmistakable, ingeniously exact drawings of the professional group "Les gens de justice" were created by one of the outstanding masters of political caricature, namely Honoré Daumier, who died in 1808 in Marseille and in 1879 in Valmondois in northern France, along with thousands of other drawings. Hardly any other contemporary has impaled French political developments and social grievances in the middle of the 19th century with sharp-edged pen like Daumier. Glaser's son Daumier came from a family background in which poverty was a permanent condition. The young Daumier already had to work hard as a child. Fortunately, his extraordinary talent for drawing was discovered and encouraged. Daumier, who was also a talented lithographer and sculptor, was fortunate to have a relatively secure livelihood from 1831 onwards, thanks to a more or less permanent position as a caricaturist for the Parisian satirical magazine "La Caricature" and its follow-up magazine "Le Charivari". Daumier's famous colleagues in these magazines included Jean Ignace Gérard, called "Grandville", and Charles-Joseph Traviès. Daumier's drawn archetypes, such as the bourgeois bourgeois Robert Macaire, pointed to the hollowness, greed and misanthropy of the aristocratic and upper middle-class classes, who considered themselves to be the "elite", and their toady in the petty bourgeoisie. A politico-economic class which, despite the fall of the kingdom in 1848, the subsequent short-term Second Republic (1848 - 1852), the empire of Napoleon III, the "elite" and the "bourgeoisie". (1852 - 1870) and the subsequently established Third Republic, it remained essentially unchanged. Daumier's caustic criticism of the rulers and of stupidity brought him into conflict with the law more than once. His famous caricature of King Louis Philippe, who as a glutton ("Gargantua") devours his people, even led to a prison sentence in 1832. Daumier's black and white drawings, wood engravings and lithographs are characterized by clear light-shadow contrasts. Less well known than his caricatures are Daumier's 300 paintings committed to the realistic school of Barbizon, such as "The Washerwoman" (1863), as well as his sculptures such as the figure "Ratapoil" (1851). Daumier was well connected in the cultural avant-garde of his time. Among his friends and admirers were George Sand and Louis Cabat.

The Troubadour, 1868-1873 Tocqueville, 1849 Rough masons Memories of Sainte-Pelagie A castle in Spain The Legislative Belly, 1834 A Perfect Technician Outside the Print Sellers Shop, c.1860-1863 Les Bons Bourgeois A Castle in Spain Don Quixote and Sancho Panza (oil) Transnonian Street, 1834 The Ribalds (The Millers Daughters) An Actor (pen & ink and wash on paper) The Baptism of Achilles, published in Le Charivari, 28 August, 1842 The Amateurs The Amateurs At the Palace of Justice, c.1862-65 (pen and ink, gouache and wc on paper) A man on a white horse History of killing time, waiting for the opening of the Universal Exhibition in Paris, cartoon from Le Charivari, 15 May, 1855 Ratapoil, c.1850 and c.1960 (bronze with dark brown patina) Rebel grocer fires on the gendarmes during the July Revolution, 1830 Don Quixote’s Vigil, 1855-56
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