“The Uprising”

Honore Daumier, “The Uprising,” 1848 or later. Oil on canvas.

In honor of today’s electoral fever – lets look at one of the masters of political caricatures. While this is one of Daumier’s more “polished” images, the subject is no less moving. His oeuvre consists mostly of caricatured lithographs of French politicians – pear shaped heads & gargantuan bodies swallowing up the revenue of the working class. Yet The Uprising relays the “Bloody June Days’ during the Revolution of 1848 in Paris in which “The Citizen King,” King Louis-Phillipe was overthrown. In just 10 days, 10,000 people were killed and over 11,000 arrested. The point here is not to relay a journalistic point of view – but an emotional one, with Daumier’s signature style of smudgy and mundane, yet honest and resilient citizens. So tonight – whether you voted or not, whether you are fed up with the social media rants, or igniting the fire – be thankful that we in America can vote – and that we only had to have one American Revolution. You could have been born in France in 1848. (Original post to Instagram November 6, 2012.)

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