I was browsing around at my parent's house a few months ago...
My grandmother was a painter and had many art books which are now at my family home. As I flipped through some books I came across a Picasso poster, neatly folded into fours, that was between the pages. I opened it up to find the poster below; a 1970 art exhibition poster with the name Mourlot printed at the bottom.
Strangely, my mother had never recalled ever seeing this poster. My grandmother must have purchased in 1970 and put it inside the book and forgotten about it. It was rather exciting to me, uncovering something of hers 'lost' for so long. We were very close and this felt like a brief renewal of our bond...
After some online research I discovered that the name Mourlot referred to Atelier Mourlot, founded in 1852. It was a lithographic print shop located in Paris, France. They started as a printer of fine wallpaper and went on to produce illustrated books and high quality posters.
By 1937 they had become the largest printer of artistic posters for the French National Museums as well as many foreign institutions. Many major 20th. century artists visited the studio and worked there to create original graphic works of art.
I discovered that the Picasso poster was worth in the area of $600. Of course the connection I had to it was priceless and I chose to frame it and display it in our home.
A few weeks ago, I was doing my thrift shop rounds, hoping to find cool items for my Found Vintage Style Etsy shop. As I glanced at the picture section of the suburban Goodwill store I was in the above Matisse poster caught my eye. It had the same look as my Picasso poster and upon closer inspection I saw the familiar name Mourlot at the bottom. This poster is from a 1961 exhibit. Wow... what were the chances to find such a treasure in a completely different way?
I paid my $7.99 for it and happily have hung it as a companion to my other one.
Serendipity... fate, chance... all good words to describe how my 2 posters ended up side by side.