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Marie-Louise-Charlotte-Philippine Pairie, fille soumise & patentée par la police. (Plate 452 in la Caricature).
After the July-Revolution and the reinstatement of the Freedom of the Press, CHARLES PHILIPON (1800-1862) recognized the growing desire of the public for information. In 1830, he founded the political satirical illustrated paper LA CARICATURE, succeeding LA SILHOUETTE, which only had a short publication period of 14 months. PHILIPON’s brother-in-law GABRIEL AUBERT was responsible for the distribution and sale of the publication.
LA CARICATURE can be considered the first political and satirical French newspaper of that period combining politics and contemporary art. The format of the 4-page paper was 36 x 27 cm and it was customary to insert two, sometimes three, lithographs in each edition. They were usually folded, sometimes hand-colored, and printed on white wove paper without text on the verso. On occasions, an oversize print was added. The text was written by PHILIPON, BALZAC and others. GRANDVILLE was responsible for the masthead and the advertisement poster. In total, there appeared 251 editions of LA CARICATURE from Nov.4, 1830 to Aug.27, 1835 featuring 524 caricatures of various artists, of which 91 by Daumier. Each edition fluctuated between 750 and 2’000 copies.
It is interesting to note that the annual subscription price of 52 Francs for the illustrated paper was relatively high. It corresponded to two thirds of the monthly income of a Parisian worker. PHILIPON justified this price with the contributions of devoted journalists and gifted artists which gave the paper a very high standard both artistically and politically. For readers who were interested but unable to afford the hefty subscription price, there was a daily copy posted in the window of Aubert’s shop at Galerie Véro-Dodat (in the artistic and cultural center of Paris, close to the Palais Royal). This attracted the public who absorbed eagerly the latest developments on censorship, law trials, punishments, subjects that gave the artists the possibility to produce satirical illustrations.
With "Timbre Royal" stamp on verso. French political caricatures of the 19th century chronicle the gradual, often-violent end of the Monarchy and the emergence of a democratic state. French rulers strictly regulated the popular press, especially satirical images. In a time when a large percentage of the population couldn't read, these images were seen as a greater threat to the established order than the printed word.
French caricaturists worked under government-imposed censorship throughout most of the 19th century. Artists and editors were imprisoned, fines were levied and newspapers were seized. Offenders were rigorously prosecuted for "press crimes," which authorities interpreted as alleged defamatory and subversive attacks on the government.
More about Honoré Daumier [+]
Reference: Brandeis Institutional Repository 10192/1333
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