Caroline Durieux (1896-1989)


Caroline Durieux (1896-1989). Exceedingly rare and probably unique version of Mardi Gras Day, Five Girls. Lithograph on laid paper, plate measures 8 3/4 x 10 7/8 inches; sheet measures 10.5 x 13 inches. Signed in pencil lower right margin. Original matting is cut to 16 x 20 inches. Unframed. Sheet is taped and hinged with original non-archival materials that display fading and toning consistent with non pH-neutral materials. Moderate matte burn at margins. Otherwise excellent condition with no damage or restoration. No spotting, stains or loss.


This previously unknown version of Mardi Gras Day, Five Girls is a variant of the series published in a addition of 10. While beautiful, it may very well be a trial version that the artist felt was unsatisfactory. The final version is rendered a bit smaller, and has the closest figure standing on a sewer cover. In that version, the farthest figure is much more distinct than in this version where she is in shadow and nearly obscured.
It is signed lower right, but untitled lower left, which is not customary practice for Durieux, and suggests it was never meant for sale or public exhibition.
Shipping price includes insurance.
Price on request

Birth place: New Orleans, LA

Death place: Baton Rouge, LA

Addresses: New Orleans, LA active 1913-43; Baton Rouge, LA

Profession: Printmaker, painter

Studied: Tulane Univ.; PAFA, H. McCarter; E. Woodward; Newcomb College, B.A. (art educ.), 1917; PAFA, 1918-20 (fellowship); Louisiana State Univ., M.A., 1949.

Exhibited: Salons of Am., 1931; Marie Sterner Gal., NYC, 1935 (solo); Chicago Arts Club; New Orleans Arts & Crafts Club ; S.Indp.A., 1936-37; Delgado Mus., 1944 (prize); PAFA, 1944-46; CI, 1944-46; LOC Print Ann., 1944, 1946 (prizes); Cincinnati Mus. of Fine Arts International Biennial, OH, 1956; San Francisco 24th Ann., CA, 1961; Print Council Am., Europe & Far East, 1962; Second National Lithography Exhib., Florida State Univ., 1966; Louisiana State Univ., Alexandria, 1969; Louisiana State Univ. Union Art Gal., Baton Rouge, 1978; June 1 Gal., Bethlehom, CT, 1979; WMAA. Awards: res. grants for development of electron prints & clichés verres, Louisiana State Univ. Coun. Res., 1951-60 & 1972-73; Women’s Caucus for Art, 1980 (outstanding achievement in visual arts)

Member: NAWPS; Am. Artists Congress; New Southern Group; SSAL; New Orleans Arts & Crafts Club; NOAA; Audubon Artists; Baton Rouge Gallery.

Work: Univ. Florida; Univ. Tulsa; Delgado Mus.; Rosenwald Collection, NGA; MoMA; Philadelphia Mus. Art; LOC; BibliothÈque Nat., Paris.

Comments: Renowned as a lithographer and satirist, she started drawing in grade school and began serious art studies at Newcomb College. In 1920 she married an import-export dealer and traveled through much of Central and South America, making bold paintings of local landscapes and flowers. In 1926 she took up residence in Mexico City for some years, working closely with noted artists like Diego Rivera; she executed her first lithograph there. In 1936 she returned to New Orleans. Positions: consultant, Federal Art Project, Works Project Admin., 1938-43. Publications: illustrator, Gumbo Ya Ya,” Houghton, 1938; illustrator, “New Orleans City Guide,” Works Project Admin., 1938; co-author, “Mardigras Day,” Holt, 1948. Teaching: instructor life class painting, Newcomb College, 1920-21 & 1938-43; from asst. prof. to prof. graphics, Louisiana State Univ., Baton Rouge, 1943-65, emer. prof, 1965-. During her years at L.S.U., she was an innovator in printmaking, reviving clichÈ verre and introducing the electron printing process.

Sources: WW73; Encylopaedia of New Orleans Artists, 1718-1918; Salpeter, “About Caroline Durieux,” Coronet, 1937; “Caroline Durieux,” Louisiana State Univ. Press, 1949; Zigrosser, The Appeal of Prints, New York Graphics,1970; Petteys, Dictionary of Women Artists.