The advertisement shown below, designed by Adolphe Wilette, uses a provocative image to present Kleinmann’s range.
The stark-naked prostitute was his business’s cheeky muse.
Kleinmann specialised in the new talent among the French avant-garde, and sold the popular prints of the caricaturistes-illustrateurs, including the sheet music illustrated by Henri-Gabriel Ibels and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec.
The dealer took the lithographic covers of sheet music and the photomechanically reproduced illustrations for magazines like Le Rire and Le Courrier Français and printed them on high-quality paper, without the lettering, and in numbered editions.
He had the artists sign the prints and he also stamped them with his personal seal. In this way, Kleinmann cleverly ‘raised’ popular commercial printwork to the level of deluxe collectors’ editions.
André Mellerio, La Lithographie originale en couleurs, Paris 1898
Patricia Eckert Boyer, ‘The Artist as Illustrator in Fin-de-siècle France’, in The Graphic Arts and French Society 1871-1914, New Brunswick 1988, p. 113-169
Phillip Dennis Cate et al., Prints Abound: Paris in the 1890s, from the Collections of Virginia and Ira Jackson and the National Gallery of Art, Washington/London 2000