The Distinctive Art Form of Our Time

bonnard lithographie.jpg
André Mellerio (1862-1943), La Lithographie originale en couleurs (Paris: Publication de L’Estampe et L’Affiche, 1898). Two lithographs by Pierre Bonnard (1867-1947). Graphic Arts Collection 2012- in process

“André Mellerio, publisher of L’Estampe et l’affiche, wrote the decade’s most influential book on the subject, La Lithographie originale en couleurs (Paris, 1898). Describing the infrastructure for graphic art, he declared colour lithography ‘the distinctive art form of our time’ and found forty artists worthy of special mention. Chief among them were Toulouse-Lautrec and four of the Nabis—Pierre Bonnard, Edouard Vuillard, Maurice Denis and Ker-Xavier Roussel.”
—Pat Gilmour, Grove Art Online

bonnard lithographie2.jpg

For his own book, Mellerio chose Bonnard to illustrate the volume with a lively cover and frontispiece. His essay has, happily, been translated to English in its entirety by Dennis Cate and can be read in: Phillip Dennis Cate, The Color Revolution: Color Lithography in France, 1890-1900; with a translation by Margaret Needham of André Mellerio’s 1898 essay La lithographie originale en couleurs (New Brunswick, N.J.: Rutgers University Art Gallery, in cooperation with the Boston Public Library, c1978). Graphic Arts Collection (GA) Oversize 2009-0243Q