The collection of Les Hommes D'Aujourd'hui was founded in September 1878 by André Gill and Félicien Champsaur. The journal was first published by Cinqualbre (until 1883), then by Léon Vanier after two years of interruption. The last publication appeared in 1899. André Breton posessed 27 numbers of the collection.
The revue was originally inspired by the successful journal, Le Bulletin de vote, published in collaboration with the journalist Maxime Rude which was a collection of illustrated biographies, promoting the republican candidats in the legislative elections of October 1877. The collection of Les Hommes d'aujourd'hui strays from militant politics; each number (containing 4 pages) is devoted to a different contemporary figure belonging to the world of arts, literature or science. A colorful portrait of the spotlight celebrity is on each cover, followed by three pages of text. Written in jest, these texts are composed of contemporaneous and fantastic elements.
When Léon Vanier took over the publication in 1885, he would finalize the element of caracature for the series (André Gill and Henri Demare were the consecutive authors of the first portraits).
Among the graphic artists were Collignon and Toqueville. The duo signed under the pseudonym, "Coll-Toc". Among the graphic artists that would join, would be Luque, alias Manuel Luque de Soria. In number 332 of the collection, Luque portrays Anatole Baju.
The French journalist and writer is represented here with the features of a roman soldier, armed with a quill pen in the form of a spear. He is the target of many arrows from which he protects himself thanks to the shield upon which we read the following inscription: "The Decadent," the name of the journal that he founded in 1886. This title, holding a provocative subtext, was the target of much criticism, in the line-of-fire of those political positions which the informed citizen defends: anarchic, pro-unionist, anti-militaristic.
The new generation of which the review, Le décadent littéraire claims as their territorial flag are the masters, Stéphane Mallarmé and Paul Verlaine. The first is represented by Luque in a vignette placed in the top right corner of the drawing, sainted, with a halo of prestige of which the decadent poets were most proud. Paul Verlaine, according to him, is the author of the description of Anatole Baju, appearing in number 332.
|Bibliographical material||Breton Sale, lot 1107. Paris, Librarie Vanier, no date, In-4° soft cover.|
|Date of publication||1878|
|Publisher||Librairie Vanier, Paris|
|Breton Auction, 2003||Lot 1107|
|Keywords||Graphic Arts, Monographs, Reviews and Journals|
|Set||[Journal] Les Hommes d'aujourd'hui|