50.5 cm x 39 cm (19 7/8 in. x 15 3/8 in.)
(Gournay (Seine-et-Oise), 1849 - 1906, Paris)
Medium and Support:
Blanton Museum of Art, The University of Texas at Austin, The Leo Steinberg Collection, 2002
Carrière trained first as a commercial lithographer, then studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. After three failed attempts at winning the Prix de Rome, he abandoned the official art establishment. He met Symbolist writers and developed a style of painting and printmaking that was equivalent to their evocative and dreamlike manner in literature.
This is the first in a series of portrait prints depicting his contemporaries. Working with tusche -- ink brushed onto the lithographic stone -- he scraped and scratched the surface to achieve a form that simultaneously emerges from and dissolves into the velvety ground. Alphonse Daudet (1840-1897) was a novelist often compared with the British author Charles Dickens. His Christ-like features were not lost on the writer and critic Edmond de Goncourt (1822-1896), who called it “A portrait of Daudet crucified.”