For Immediate Release —Oct. 15, 2008

David Irwin
Media Relations Manager
(585) 245-5516


Above:  Honoré Daumier lithograph, “Masks from 1831”

SUNY Geneseo to Celebrate Daumier’s Bicentennial Birthday With Caricature Exhibition

GENESEO, N.Y. – The State University of New York at Geneseo will celebrate the 200th anniversary of the birth of French artist and social satirist Honoré Daumier with a seven-week exhibition of his caricatures, which offers commentary on French social and political life in the 19th century.  

“Honoré Daumier 1808-2008: Caricature as Social Commentary” is scheduled Oct. 20 – Dec. 6 in the college’s Lockhart Gallery, 26 Main St., and is supported by Geneseo’s School of the Arts and the Geneseo Foundation.  The works for the exhibition are on loan from the collection of the late Geneseo physician Dr. James H. Lockhart Jr., a Daumier enthusiast who collected the lithographs in this exhibit and hundreds of additional Daumier works. 

“The members of my family are pleased to be offering this exhibit for public viewing,” said John M. Lockhart III, the grandson of James Lockhart and a Geneseo attorney.  “Daumier inspired my grandfather, who very much appreciated his artistic talent and ability to expose a wide range of personalities, especially those who were power-hungry,” said Lockhart.  “Daumier portrayed an enormous range of human behavior, much of it humorous, some of it tragic.”

Daumier was a printmaker, painter and sculptor but is best known for his lithographs depicting social and political satire, a genre of art focused on poking fun at human folly, which he did via the hundreds of caricatures and cartoons he produced.  Many of Daumier’s works contain biting sarcasm aimed at those in powerful positions, but many of his caricatures and cartoons also reflect on the life of the ordinary citizen. 

An opening lecture and reception for the exhibition are scheduled Oct. 30.  Petra ten-Doesschate Chu, director of the Museum Profession Program at Seton Hall University, will deliver a lecture on Daumier at 4 p.m. in Newton Hall, Room 214, followed by a reception in the Lockhart Gallery from 5 to 6:30 p.m.  Both are open to the public without charge.

Another lecture on the exhibition is scheduled Nov. 5 from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. in the college’s Milne Library, Room 104, where University of Pennsylvania artist Sara Smith-Katz will address “Abolitionists and Caricature.”  Her remarks will connect 19th century French caricature to 19th century American caricature in the service of the abolitionist movement.

Lockhart Gallery hours are Monday through Thursday from noon to 4 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from noon to 6 p.m.  For more information, call (585) 245-5813 or visit