Costume print by Emile Gallois. From Costumes de L’union Francaise. Paris: Editions Arc-en-ciel, ca. 1920. Ca. 10 1/2 x 6 1/2. From an edition limited to one thousand copies. Printed by lithography and colored in the pouchoir manner. Very good condition.
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A beautiful costume print of a native woman of French Guiana. This is from a series of prints by Emile Gallois, the exquisite and clearly colored images serving as documentation of the ethnic diversity of the French Empire at the end of World War I. They show the traditional costumes of the inhabitants of French colonies in the Americas, Asia, Africa and Oceania. It is interesting to realize that not only are these prints a wonderful documentation of these cultures, but they also had an impact on fashions in a rapidly shrinking world that would study and appreciate the cultures of many lands.