Lot 509: ALS in French, signed "Henri de Toulouse Lautrec," four pages on two adjoining sheets, 4.25 x 6.5, no date but circa January–February 1879. Letter to his aunt "Tata." In part (translated): "The time I spent in Nice is very agreeable, the weather is almost always good, the hotel is pleasant, good food, good friends, an ideal professor, and the sea! What more do you want from life when you also have a tata? The hotel is large, there are around 70 people, English, French, Russian, Americans, Canadians, Spaniards, German and Austrian. The servants and the owner are all Swiss. We leave the hotel at least twice a day and we stroll through the palm trees. Carnival here is magnificent! Everyone wears masks and throws confetti. These are small plaster balls the size of a pea. We have already bought our masks. One day with Mr. Levi and Mrs. Moss we've been to Monaco. Mr. Levi risked five francs and got six fifty out of it. The casino is everything that one can dream of most beautiful, and the interior of the theater is gilded. You see that you should profit from this opportunity and come to us to see all this.We've had two balls with concerts in the hotel, it was great fun. A magician has also come. Please tell Kiki that I am looking for a large doll to give her. Goodbye my dear tata. I beg you to kiss my godmother, my uncle, my aunt…and the big little girl for me. Be also so kind as to forward my respects to the priest and Mme. Maurice. Your fat nephew who wants to have you and to kiss you other than on paper." Uniform toning and scattered foxing, otherwise fine condition.At this time Lautrec had begun to experience problems with his legs and he had traveled to Nice with his mother at the beginning of 1879, where they hoped the mild climate and curative waters would help him recover from a broken left leg. He spent much of his time drawing and sketching, making close observations of his environment as evidenced in this letter. Even his writing as a young man evokes the vibrant imagery of crowds and parties for which his artwork is known. Lautrec's signature is rarely found in full as in this example, further enhancing its desirability.
RR Auction's Fine Autographs and Artifacts Auction 467
Wednesday, 13th January 2016
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