The French Popular Lithographic Imagery, 1815-1870 series reproduces in twelve volumes approximately 5000 nineteenth-century lithographs from the collections of the Bibliothèque nationale.
Beatrice Farwell's multivolume text-fiche catalog is an essential resource to art historians and will appeal to all those interested in nineteenth-century France.
In the final volume, Lithography in Art and Commerce, Farwell discusses how lithography, the revolutionary printing technology of the nineteenth century, came to be devoted more to commerce than to art. Farwell studies the many commercial applications of the versatile lithographic medium, showing how lithography was transformed from artisanal craft to industrial mass production. In exploring the connection between art and commerce, Farwell enriches our understanding of the relations between so-called "high" and "low" art in nineteenth-century France. The fiche accompanying the text features art reproductions, courses of instruction in drawing, examples of different lithographic techniques, and an important section on the development of color lithography.