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Artist: Alphonse Mucha Czech (1860-1939)

Item: LU.1

Title: Lefèvre-Utile Gaufrettes Vanille

Description: Condition A+
Original label,
printed by Champenois, Paris, ca. 1900
Main image signed in the stone lower left.
Framed.

Reference: Biscuits / Herscherp.66, L'Art du Biscuit p. 86.

Presented in 16 x 20 in.
acid free, archival museum mat, with framing labels. Ready to frame. Shipped boxed flat
Certificate of Authenticity.
See our Terms of Sale

Frame Size: 15 1/2 in x 15 3/4 in
  39.4 cm x 40 cm
Sheet Size: 6 3/4 in x 7 in
  17.1 cm x 17.8 cm
Price: Sold

"This design, using the face of a young woman from one of his Lefevre-Utile posters, was here called into play as a box-top for tins of vanilla wafers embellished with metallic gold ink." )

"An angelic blonde woman is wearing a red-floral wreath upon her head within a green, metallic gold, red and blue border; lettering in white. Note how he has artfully worked the initials "LU" into the border design. (Swann)


Original biscuit box, Mucha Label

"Mucha designed several box tops for Lefèvre-Utile biscuits, each consisting of a central design and two back-to-back trademarks, all printed on one sheet. In the individual distinguishing pictures, Mucha depicted fashionable social occasions at which biscuits are being consumed, mostly with wine—otherwise, lush nymphs enjoying the outdoors also suit the purpose. All of the background patterns, ornamental borders, and decorative elements are executed with Mucha’s typical attention to detail. And each of the designs is assigned a specific background color; in the case of this label, he's chosen a jewel-tone azure." (Rennert)

See Greg's other Lefèvre-Utile labels by Mucha:




"Mucha’s fame as a poster artist led him to commissions for packaging design. He became a regular artist for Lefèvre-Utile, the major French biscuit company founded in Nantes in 1846.  He designed publicity posters and calendars for them and around 1900 Mucha’s task was expanded to packaging design, which included labels, box tops and the decoration of biscuit tins.

For Mucha, packaging design meant the decoration of objects (products) by applying art to their forms in order to enhance their charm and character. Therefore, as he wrote later, he thought that art should serve as a language to the object to be decorated. This idea is demonstrated in the message carried by the biscuit boxes:  the moment of happiness and comfort, as illustrated in the insets, as well as the quality of the products, which is enhanced by the box decorated with the borders emphasising solidity and dignity. Also Mucha produced a ‘brand’ with the use of a consistent font, logo and decorative formula, which linked the packaging with the publicity." (Mucha Foundation.org)


The original Lefèvre-Utile factory in Nantes

The Lefèvre-Utile Biscuit Co.
was founded in Nantes, France, in 1846 by Jean-Romain Lefèvre. Originally he sold biscuits from the English factory Huntley & Palmers and then he began his own production. The name LU comes from Lefèvre and his business partner and wife, Pauline-Isabelle Utile. Their initials were first utilized by Mucha for an 1897 calendar ad for the Lefèvre-Utile Biscuit Co.

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