It's high time I showed you yet another set of war time exhibition labels, which were produced in France during World War Two, to be sold at philatelic shows in Paris, with the proceeds being used for artists, intellectuals, etc, in financial need. Today I'm showing you the three contributions of Pierre Gandon.
At the time, Pierre was one of the upcoming engravers who would go on to have a magnificent career lasting for many decades. His first stamp dated from 1939, so when he engraved the three labels shown here he was still very much feeling his way around.
His first label depicts Napoleon's tomb, as part of a series of important Parisian views, monuments etc. Maybe not the most elegantly engraved stamp, but I like the subject, if only because it reminds me of how immensely overwhelmed I was by the real thing.
His next stamp is a lot more intricate. It depicts Louis XIV and the Academy. Louis XIV was patron of the French Academy, the French institute for all matters pertaining to the French language. I love the way in which Gandon has been able to represent the curly elegance of wigs, clothing etc, and has managed to give the little faces a bit of expression.
Completely different in style, but just as evocative, is the third and final stamp, depicting a scene from the opera Louise by Gustave Charpentier. The opera deals with working class life in Paris. Gone are the frills and curls and instead Pierre painted a much more stylised tableau of a Parisian street.
So in all we have three different labels showing how the engraver developed and was able to translate designs more and more originally and convincingly.