L'Antiquaire (The Antiquarian)

Auguste Brouet (1872-1941), L’Antiquaire (The Antiquarian), etching and drypoint, c. 1905, signed in pencil lower right and numbered lower left. Reference: Geffroy/Boutitie 69, first state (of 2); G/B 68, second state (of 3). In very good condition, with margins (a deckle edge on the bottom), 3 7/16 x 5 5/16, the sheet 4 1/2 x 8 1/2 inches.

A fine impression, printed on a cream laid paper.

In the initial state our antiquarian is shown inside a shop, with various antiques hanging outside the shop. In this state the plate is reduced a bit – a print container is added just outside of the entryway, and the antiques hanging at the left are burnished out. The antiquarian has changed his profession; he now focuses on prints. In the third state the plate is reduced again, and in the blank space the name and address of a publisher, Frederick Gregoire, is added.

The catalogue raisonne for Brouet listed the first state separately, as G/B 68; G/B 69, which is shown as having two states,  is actually the second and third states of G/B 68.

Brouet was a highly regarded etcher at beginning of the 19th Century and thereafter; he studied with Gustave Moreau and Auguste Delatre in his early years, and later worked with Degas and Whistler.  But of course it’s clear that Rembrandt etchings were central to his aesthetic approach.