Referring to my recent post about the Dosne-Thiers building - from the windows you have an excellent view of Place Saint-George. You can see the building where the famous courtesan “La Païva” lived for a while before moving to her fantastic mansion on the Champs-Elysées (on which I posted here). Originally (1824) there was a fountain in the middle of the place. It lost its water when the metro line no. 12 was created (1906).
The fountain was replaced in 1911 by a monument (by Deny Peuch) in honour of the illustrator Paul Gavarni (1804-66), who, as many prominent 19th century artists, lived in this then fairly recently exploited area.
The illustrations on the monument refer to Gavarni’s work, which mostly was in a quite caricaturist style. We see some faces, where water is (was?) supposed to spout.
Here we have some examples of Gavarni's illustrations referring to masquerades and carnivals…
… and some with reference to the “lorettes” - young ladies who were some kind of a lower class courtesans – they had to be supported not by one but by several men. They got their nickname from the nearby church Notre-Dame-de-Lorette.
Gavarni’s illustrations were to a large part published in a satirical newspaper, which appeared 1832-1937, “Le Charivari”. This newspaper (as Gavarni himself) had of course a number of difficulties with censorship, fines, prison, lack of money… It had a number of other prominent collaborators like Gustave Doré (as from when he was 15 years old). I show an example where Honoré Daumier and Cham illustrate and refer to Manet’s exhibition of “Olympia”.
Gavarni was his artist name – his real name was Sulpice Guillaume Chevallier. He also made some more “serious” illustrations. Here we can see portraits he made of a young Victor Hugo, of Balzac, of the Goncourt brothers – all friends to him – and also a self-portrait… and a caricature of an older Gavarni made by another friend, Nadar, better known as a photographer.