Beauty in Blue
Image of an idealized Art Deco Woman.An academically trained painter and illustrator, Barbier worked primarily for the fashion magazines of Paris, contributing not only drawings but articles, too. This is a preliminary study for his poster promoting a modish charitable affair in January 1923. That same month, he penned the following withering description of the event for la Gazette du bon ton: ""The dowagers sit next to actresses and ageless, unidentifiable crones, embalmed by their lotions and potions, wearing their pearls like a disease...The beautiful people lean on their elbows with their elbows with their patrician faces and sigh...In the balconies, showgirls dressed in pink and blue put on innocent airs as if they were little shepherdesses...Forget the polite trappings of the cotillon;hands wave in the air with the crazy joy that madmen bring to their pleasures..."". For all his barbed words, Barbier's image of an idealized Art Deco woman - short hair, plucked eyebrows, dangling earrings and plunging neckline - must have inspired at least as many ticket buyers as the deluxe raffle offerings.