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Ambassadeurs: Aristide Bruant dans Son Cabaret

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Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864 – 1901) was a French painter, printmaker, draftsman, and illustrator. The period he created his art was known as the Belle Époque and his focus was on the decadence in Parisian society. For his friend and great Montmartre chansonnier, Aristide Bruant, Lautrec made several posters. Bruant was a strong, forceful, in many ways vulgar entertainer of intimate cabarets, the kind of places where fashionable society went 'slumming' for thrills. Lautrec catches the brutal quality and the disdain with which he treated his audiences. This design is one of the most imposing poster images of all time. The singer dominates the poster with as much authority as he commanded on stage, the red scarf forming an exclamation point. The thrust and power are achieved by fine draftsmanship, excellent colours, and bold composition.