Chaumieres Dans Les Marais

Jean-Emile Laboureur etching and roulette, Chaumieres Dans Les Marais, 1930, signed lower left and numbered 12/80, Reference: Sylvain Laboureur 422, Godefry 422. Third state of three. From the total printing of 108, 85 in this state. With the blindstamp of Jacquart lower right margin. In very good condition, on medium wove paper with full margins, 7 3/4 x 8 3/4, the sheet 11 1/2 x 14 1/4 inches.

A fine, vivid impression.

Jean-Emile Laboureur was born in Nantes in 1877. He traveled to Paris in 1895 intending to study law at the Sorbonne, but found himself drawn to the nearby famed Academie Julian, and although he never officially matriculated there, he became immersed in the Parisian art scene, after which he traveled widely, staying for periods in the US and London, and studying classic art and printmaking in Italy and Germany.

In this context it’s worth noting that the three houses at the right in this etching bear a remarkable affinity to those in Rembrandt’s etching¬†Three Gabled Cottages (Hind 246),¬†a print surely familiar to Laboureur.

Although he had moved back to Paris by 1910, a time when analytical cubism was emerging in the work of Picasso and Braque, he continued working in an abstract, modernist mode, waiting until about 1913 or shortly thereafter to invent a cubist idiom all his own. Cubism remained an important theme for Laboureur, a theme he varied, sometimes using it as a strong design or compositional component, sometimes only as a subtle background element, as in Chaumieres, where he uses etching (not engraving, a more usual method) to achieve a warm atmospheric portrait of this farm scene.