World Record Posters Sale From PAI Totals Over $2.8 Million

Work From Belle Époque Master Alphonse Mucha Continues To Be In Demand

May 20, 2022

Poster Auctions International’s (PAI) first sale of the year, on March 20, finished at $2,880,000. Rare Posters Auction LXXXVI proved that the poster market shows no signs of slowing down.
“Once again, I am humbled by the passion demonstrated by our consignors and bidders. At such a tumultuous time in the world, we could not have predicted the great success of this sale. It’s clear to me that collectors are not only looking for beautiful objects to display in their homes, but investment pieces as well,” said Jack Rennert, president of PAI.
As with previous sales, collectors vied for works by Alphonse Mucha, especially his lesser seen designs. The top sale from the Belle Époque master was his 1902 “Documents Décoratifs,” an exquisite portfolio of decorative elements and poster designs that sold for $55,200 (est. $25,000-$30,000). His 1903 “Exposition de St. Louis,” estimated at $12,000-$15,000, was hotly desired, and it was eventually won for $50,400. His 1917 “Bohemian Heart Society” made its auction debut, wowing collectors into a $48,000 win (est. $5,000-$6,000), and a never-before-seen drawing, “Seated Woman,” was a must for collectors, earning a winning bid of $40,800 (est. $7,000-$9,000). All prices quoted include the buyer’s premium.
Passionate bidding was similar for Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, whose rarer lithographs captured the attention of collectors. This auction’s top sale was his iconic 1891 “Moulin Rouge / La Goulue,” which sold for $240,000. Collectors were enraptured by his 1899 “Le Jockey,” which was won for $96,000 (est. $50,000-$60,000). His 1898 “L’Automobiliste” was available for the first time at auction, and collectors vied for the chance to win; it sold for $72,000 (est. $40,000-$50,000).
For the “father of the poster,” Jules Chéret, it was actually his paintings that awed collectors the most. The pastel “La Danse,” was won for $36,000 (est. $15,000-$20,000). The small-scale but sassy “Jolie en Rose” oil painting was secured with a winning bid of $21,600 (est. $8,000-$10,000). And his more somber “Les Belles Musiciennes” pastel was won for $14,400 (est. $8,000-$10,000).
Further Art Nouveau highlights include Adolfo Hohenstein’s exquisite 1900 “Monaco / Exposition de Canots Automobiles,” which was won for $10,800. Ludwig Hohlwein’s incredibly rare and vibrant “Zoologischer Garten München,” from 1912, accrued a win of $18,000 (est. $8,000-$10,000). Another powerful design by this German designer, the 1910 “Münchener Renn Verein,” secured a winning bid of $8,400 (est. $3,500-$4,000).
Sales were similarly impassioned for works from the Art Deco era. Paul Colin’s seminal 1927 “Bal Nègre” received a winning bid of $90,000. Charles Loupot’s one-of-a-kind billboard for “St. Raphaël / Quinquina,” from 1938, was won for $55,200 (est. $35,000-$45,000). And his first design for that company, the 1937 “St. Raphaël,” earned $24,000. For A. M. Cassandre, two posters were particularly notable: his 1928 “The Continent via Harwich” sold for $26,400 (est. $17,000-$20,000), and his 1929 “La Route Bleue” was won for $28,800 (est. $20,000-$25,000).
Poster Auctions International’s next Rare Posters Auction will be held on Tuesday, July 12. Poster Auctions International is located at 26 W. 17th Street, New York, N.Y.
PAI may be reached by phone at 212-787-4000 or via email at


More Articles