La Lecture Interrompue


Jean-Emile Laboureur (1877-1943), La Lecture Interrompue (also La Liseuse), 1912, woodcut, signed and annotated “ep. d’artiste du 3 etat”. Reference: Sylvain Laboureur 674. In excellent condition (tiny fleck upper right, paper imperfection), on hand made cream wove paper, the full sheet with deckle edges, 9 7/8 x 6 7/8, the sheet 15 x 11 inches, archival mounting.

A fine impression of one of Laboureur’s great images; a rarity – only 11 lifetime impressions were printed.

Jean-Emile Laboureur 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. The great wood engraver Auguste Lepere taught him woodcutting, which initiated Laboureur in an involvement in printmaking that would extend through his career. In 1886 he met Toulouse Lautrec, who influenced Laboureur’s emerging aesthetic style, as did the work of Odilon Redon, Bonnard, and perhaps most notably Felix Vallotton, who became a close colleague, and whose woodcut work often bears a close relationship to Laboureur’s. La Lecture Interrompue demonstrates the close relationship between the two artists, and is among those major achievements which created an aesthetic tradition in woodcutting that has been followed – although rarely as effectively as by these originators – by modernist artists for over a century.

We maintain an inventory of well over 100 Laboureur prints, and always welcome inquiries regarding Laboureur.