November 25, 2010

Hermine David : woman painter of the early 20th century

There are few recognized women painters in the first part of the 19th century. Hermine David (1886-1970) is among those who were able to establish themselves. Born in Paris, the painter and engraver, whom real name was Lionnette Cartan, grew up with her mother who always said she was the daughter of a Hapsburg prince. After leaving the family bosom at age 16, she take classes at Julian and, in 1906, participated in the first exhibition of women painters. Her good quality work soon  provided her the status of a recognized artist. In 1906, she also met Jules Pascin and got involved with the group of the School of Paris. The Berliner became his mentor and lover. But, Pascin pursued, in parallel, an affair with Lucy, a model for Albert Marquet. Yet, when in 1914 the war forced Pascin to leave France, it is Hermine David who followed him to the United States. The two painters got married in New York in 1918. In 1920, marked by the escapades of Pascin, the couple returned to France and eventually broke up. Pascin resumed his affair with Lucy, now married to the painter Per Krogh. Hhe still supported the work of Hermine David who went from exhibition to exhibition : the Salon d'Automne, the Salon des Independants, an exhibition at the gallery Weil.
Worn out by the roaring twenties that yet established her, Hermine David left Paris for a time and  and developed her talent as a landscape artist, while traveling in France and Spain. In 1930, Pascin committed suicide, leaving a note to Lucy. Two years later, Hermine David receives the Legion of Honour. She never ceased to produce (painting, prints, enamels). In May 1966, she retired to the Artists Retirement Home of Nogent-sur-Marne. She died 4 years later.
Currently, la librairie Loliée offers : 
  • [David (Hermine)] Larbaud (Valéry). Enfantines. Illustrés par Jeanne Rosoy, Germaine Labaye, Halicka, Hermine David. Paris, Gallimard, 1926, 4 volumes in-8,  binding in chromotypography, central illustrated medallions on each covers, case.  First illustrated edition with 24 original engravings in text by Jeanne Rosoy (tome 1), Germaine Labay (tome 2), Halicka (tome 3) and Hermine David (tome 4).  One of the 300 numbered copies on  Holland paper.
  • David (Hermine) - Rebell (Hugues). Les Nuits Chaudes du Cap Français. Paris, Henri Joncquières, « Les Beaux Romans », 1927, in-8, covers. Illustrated edition of this curiosa title,  with  18 original and in colours etchings byHermine David. Copy on Rives paper. 
  • David (Hermine) - Verlaine (Paul). Romances sans paroles. Gravures à la pointe sèche de Hermine David. Paris, Pour els Bibliophiles du Palais, 1934, in-8, en leaves, illustrated covers, folder and case. Edition with de 31 original etchings, by Hermine David. Limited to 200 copies on Rives paper.