Reference: Godefroy, Laboureur 191. Fourth state (of 4), total lifetime edition of 108 including all states. Posthumous impressions were taken in 1988, which are clearly stamped and identified. The plate has been cancelled. In good condition, on an ivory laid paper with a bunch of grapes watermark; the full sheet with wide margins (a thin spot and associated nick at left margin edges, slightest browning at margin edges.)
A very good impression of this splendid image, printed in black ink.
Le Tir Forain was conceived in sketches and drawings in 1914, and some components of the image can be seen in one of the small woodcuts Laboureur created for a series of scenes depicting the troops in World War I. A major painting on the theme was not completed, and the engraving itself was done in 1920-21; the edition was printed in 1921. Le Tir Forain is one of the most famous of Laboureur's images, and has been exhibited widely, serving as a theme for art shows and even as a decorative panel for the restaurant Boulestin.
Le Tir Forain demonstrates Laboureur's remarkable adaptation of the cubist idiom; his engraving technique is a perfect way of achieving the angularity and freshness of line that his unique approach requires.
The general composition of Le Tir Forain was set out in the first state, which is of great interest in understanding the development of the print, and the intermediate states are of interest as well (and of course represent the plate in its early and more pristine condition). But in this case, the final state - in which the lines of the targets are filled in - is really a culmination of the developmental process; so in the case of Le Tir Forain the definitive fourth state represents the last word on what the artist was aiming at in this, one of his most appealing prints.
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