Theophile Alexandre Steinlen – Le Chat Noir (1896)
Le Chat Noir was a nineteenth-century entertainment establishment, in the bohemian Montmartre district of Paris. Theophile Steinlen’s 1896 Art Nouveau poster is an advertisement for a tour to other cities of the Le Chat Noir’s troupe of cabaret entertainers. Theophile Alexandre Steinlen was a Swiss-born French Art Nouveau painter and printmaker who moved to Paris’ bohemian Montmartre section in 1883 and was friends with Henri Toulouse-Lautrec, Aristide Bruant and Adolphe Willette. His permanent home, Montmartre and its environs, was a favorite subject throughout Steinlen’s life and he often painted scenes of some of the harsher aspects of life in the area. In addition to paintings and drawings, he also did sculpture on a limited basis, most notably figures of cats that he had great affection for as seen in many of his paintings.