Le Paquebot Orénoque 1900 (Bear) Menu Art by Auguste Vimar

Le Paquebot Orénoque 1900 (Bear) Menu Art by Auguste Vimar

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Product Description

The Orénoque (Orinoco) was among the fleet of the Messageries Maritime, a French merchant shipping company that transported passengers and delivered packages and mail to people living in far-flung places. Launched in 1874, this magnificent steamship sailed with staterooms for 124 First Class passengers, for whom this menu was made. There was room too for 66 Second Class passengers, 54 Third Class passengers and “500 emigrants between decks”. It sailed from France to South America until 1895 when it began sailing the Eastern Mediterranean. It was scrapped in 1925 after service in the First World War.
This 1900 menu image of a bear balancing a glass of wine on its paw was created by the French illustrator and watercolor artist Auguste Vimar. Born in Marseille, France, in 1851, he became an illustrator for children’s books and also contributed some of his wonderful animal images to Le Figaro Illustré. He died in 1916. The animals on these first class ship menus were part of Vimar’s contribution to the fashion at that time for fantastical art images – later this style of artwork became known as magical realism.
This was a hearty dinner menu which included items such as assorted cold meats, scrambled eggs with cheese and anchovy and ham hocks and pork.
Messageries Maritimes operated from 1851 and enjoyed a golden age between 1871 and 1914. This was the period of French colonial expansion and of interventionism in the Middle and Far East. It merged several times until finally becoming defunct in 1977.

Gallery quality Giclée print on natural white, matte, 100% cotton rag, acid and lignin free archival paper using Epson K3 archival inks. Custom printed with border for matting and framing.

All printed in USA.


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