Pauhlan, Léger and Foujita are some of the artists whose works were collected by Françoise Garçon-Lhermitte.
Jean Paulhan (1884-1968), Chinoisilles pour Françoise Garçon, text belonging to Françoise Garçon-Lhermitte’s album amicorum, quarto of 84 folios on Arches, bound in anthracite shagreen, gilded Romantic style plate.
Estimate: €80,000/120,000 (the album)
"A famous lawyer [editor’s note: Maurice Garçon] and member of the Académie française was the father of a charming girl,” says André Billy. “She had an album that she had magnificently bound and in which she asked her father’s friends to compose poems, write prose or draw figures, depending on what they did best." Thus, André Maurois, Henry de Montherlant, Roland Dorgelès, François Mauriac, Colette and Jules Romains dialog with paintings and drawings by Marie Laurencin, Georges Braque, Marc Chagall, Paul Jouve, Albert Dubout, Jacques Prévert, Marcel Gromaire and Victor Vasarely. Françoise Garçon-Lhermitte was around 20 when she started asking the relations or clients of her famous father (1889-1967) to contribute. She soon grew bolder and asked artists whom she did not know but had heard of. Begun in 1947 and finished in 2002 with the words of French novelist Maurice Druon, this work carries on the tradition of the album amicorum, dating back to the 16th century and attesting to scholarly exchanges between professors and students at European universities. Goethe collected them when he was a librarian in Weimar. The Bibliothèque Nationale de France (French National Library) has a remarkable collection of them. At first, only men participated in this practice, but in the late 19th century young girls began making the albums, which lost their scientific and literary character but were often embellished with watercolors and floral motifs. What will happen to this one? It was sold by the heirs of Françoise Garçon-Lhermitte, who died in 2015, a few weeks after the publication of the first volume of Journal, 1939-1945 de Maurice Garçon, a group of small handwritten notebooks.