W. Alexis, “La colonne Vendôme”

Reflecting the political changes of his time, this caricature by W. Alexis erects a satirical tomb to the Napoleonic dynasty and to French imperialism. The artist creates a remodelled version of the statue that dominates the Vendôme column, openly playing with the codes of the Napoleonic legend and reinterpreting a monument glorifying the military victories of Napoleon I.

On 16 May 1871, during the Paris Commune, the Vendôme column was indeed taken down, in a symbolic gesture that dismantled the Napoleonic legacy. 

Paris: Duclaux Éditeur (21 Place du Château-d’Eau)

Mardre Éditeur (20 rue du Croissant), [1871]

CUL, KF.3.12

Extended captions