(Schaerbeek 1861 - Schaerbeek 1936)
Landscape with Trees
Signed Privat Livemont at the lower right.
812 x 1162 mm. (32 x 45 3/4 in.)
Privat-Livemont’s career as a painter, decorator, lithographer and commercial and magazine illustrator was a very successful one. (The artist’s letterhead noted that he was a purveyor of ‘Art posters and prints. Decorations for apartments. Traditional and modern styles. Sgraffiti’.) He became especially known as a designer of Art Nouveau posters, which he began producing in 1890, when he produced a striking poster for an exhibition in Schaerbeek, and this soon led to other commissions for posters, notably for the Cercle Artistique de Schaerbeek. By 1900 Privat-Livemont had designed some thirty posters, many published by the artist himself, and had also taken up lithography and printmaking. Among his best-known posters are those for the Casino de Cabourg and such products as Absinthe Robette or Van Houten cocoa, as well as for the Brussels International Exposition of 1897. Privat-Livemont’s poster designs were almost always based on striking images of beautiful dreamlike women, displaying a product for sale or engaged in some activity, often accompanied by floral motifs in their elegant borders. As the contemporary Belgian art critic Octave Maus, writing in 1900, noted, ‘it was easy to discover certain analogies between the posters of Privat Livemont and those of [Alphonse] Mucha…Perhaps the enquiry, far from hurting M. Privat Livemont, would be in favour of the Brussels artist whose first posters go back to 1890, that is to say, to a period when the name of Mucha was unknown.’ In his later years Privat-Livemont taught at the Académie in his native municipality of Schaerbeek.