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Cointreau - Charles Louput (1930)

This vintage lithographic print by artist Charles Louput was created in 1930, and features a reimagined design of Pierrot Cointreau - a pantomime character that served as Cointreau’s mascot since 1898. The brand had decided that the character was due for a refresh and enlisted Charles Louput, then a celebrated poster artist in Paris, to modernise the Pierrot mascot.

Central to Charles Louput’s legacy was his pioneering use of the aerograph - an early form of the airbrush - to create dynamic and clearly defined Art Deco style shapes in his posters. For this Cointreau poster, this technique is used to achieve a gradient of warm shades, cleverly evoking the texture of an orange peel. It also reminds me somewhat of the spray of citric zest when an orange is freshly squeezed, cueing a memory of the popular orange-flavored liqueur's scent.

Funnily enough, Louput kept the detail of Pierrot’s glasses unchanged. Apparently, the old Pierrot design had the distinguishing feature of glasses added as a humorous homage to the creator of Cointreau, Edouard Cointreau. It was said that Edouard had terrible myopia!