Le Café Ambulant
etching and aquatint,
exceptionally with contemporary hand coloring ("à la poupée" according to Maurice Fenaille), 1821,
on medium-heavy wove paper, a
very fine impression of the second state (of two), with small margins, the upper
margin split and reinforced along the plateline,
some slight overall soiling and mat-staining on the verso, otherwise
in quite good condition
P. 298 x 389 mm S. 315 x 400 mm.
Originally admittted under the Ancien Regime to the Académie royale de peinture et de sculpture in 1774, and a master of color printmaking with hundreds of works to his credit, Philibert-Louis Debucourt (1755-1832) was something of a survivor, who continued making prints throughout the French Revolution and well into the Bourbon Restoration.
His long-standing comittment to chronicling/satirizing his often tumultuous times
is evident here. This is one of his original compositions from
the Restoration, showing a representative cross-section of city life,
gathering around an itinerant coffee stand.
The present impression, with
contemporary hand coloring, is quite rare; those we have seen in public
collections are regularly monochrome. *