THREE original watercolors of women in elaborate costuming of the Art Nouveau period, circa 1890's, each signed with the pen name "Japhet", identical sizes and framing, (10 1/4" by 6 1/2", and 13 1/2" by 9 1/2" framed), by the noted French illustrator artist ALEXANDRE JEAN LOUIS JAZET (1814-1897). Jazet was the son of an artist who became a skilled engraver and lithographer, working often in stage design as an illustrator. He often signed with the pen name "Japhet" and "Minon". Many of his images were reproduced in posters and even post cards. These works were acquired from the estate of recently deceased actress Betsy Drake in Los Angeles. Drake (1923-2015) was the third wife of actor Cary Grant, married to him in a private ceremony attended by best man Howard Hughes. Her marriage to him was to be Grant's longest. Drake led a long and interesting life as actress, her career peaking in the 1940's, but also she notably was an early proponent of Transcendentalism, mysticism, yoga, and experimentation with LSD. She was featured in a recent Vanity Fair article. Her tastefully decorated Spanish style home in Los Angeles contained interesting artwork and other furnishings from a number of periods. These three have seen some moisture exposure over many years, leading to foxing in the white background, especially on the blue costume drawing (and the inside of the glass is especially dirty on that one). The glass should be cleaned on the inside and new mats installed which will address most of these issues, but the frames can well be retained. Note the similarity in many respects to imagery by Alphonse Mucha.
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