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In 1906, Byrrh, a now iconic French apéritif created in 1866, sponsored a poster advertising contest. The rules required that specific descriptives and phrases be prominently readable: Hygienic, tonic, a generous basic wine with quinine. There were 113 postcards derived from this poster project and prizes awarded from first to sixth place. Coming in among the 31 fifth-place winners was Raphael Kirchner and the artist of this card, Parisian Georges Bruyer (1883-1962). [Note that the postcard says there were only 112 laureates, not 113, because one entrant placed twice.]
Bruyer is particularly known today for his engravings illustrating the 1914-1918 war, but in this illustration for Byrrh, the scene is less serious and more seducing. A curvaceous woman in a ruffled gown looks demurely innocent holding up a small glass of Byrrh while an Edwardian gentleman behind her takes off his white gloves. They are set against a mottled background of deep red-orange and black. The prerequisite Byrrh phrases are written at the top in a cornflower yellow.
This postcard, about 3.5 by 5.5 inches, is in overall mint unused condition. Incredibly preserved for something produced 114+ years ago! The sporadic little white dashes you see are inherent to the printing and not near as prominent as the direct scan makes them seem. I suggest looking at the full-view scan about 2 feet away from your computer for a more accurate idea of what your card will look like in hand.
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French Art Nouveau 1906 Byrrh Postcard with Edwardian Couple
$12 USD SOLD
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