“At Gennelle, Absinthe Drinker” is a famous 1886 painting by French painter and absintheur Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec.
In 19th century France, ladies at the cafe sometimes drank through straws, so as to maintain an elegant demeanor. This painting is “Moulin De La Galette, Paris” ca 1904, by Dutch painter Isaac Lazarus Israels.
Absinthe tattoo in progress. Do you recognize the famous absinthe poster?
This absinthe spoon was made during World War I, from brass shell casings. If you look carefully, you can see two remarkable things: firstly, the soldier who owned this spoon inscribed his initials, “P.B.”, on the handle, and secondly, the holes form the date, “1914”.
One of the most expensive pre-ban absinthe spoons ever made, “Les Feuilles #20”. It was most likely used at high-end French hotels and restaurants.
The beautiful “Les Feuilles d’Absinthe #4 Absinthe Joanne”
Wormwood is a really nice plant, [although] other plants don’t like to grow around it.
Apparently, there was a doctor, a couple hundred years ago, who discovered that if wormwood is distilled, the bitterness stays behind and it still retains some medicinal properties. And that’s where we had the beginnings of absinthe.
[Editor’s note: Absinthe is traditionally enjoyed as an aperitif. In fact, the wormwood in Lucid Absinthe triggers the release of bile from the gallbladder and other secretions from intestinal glands, which can improve the body’s ability to digest food.]
Many old absinthe advertisements made use of cats.
Why are cats used in old absinthe advertisements? Perhaps because the herbal aroma released by absinthe has been known to attract cats. We hope it goes without saying that you should not let your cat drink absinthe.
The tradition of associating cats with absinthe continues to this day.
La Belle Époque (1871-1914) is a period in French history during which absinthe served as inspiration to many artists. Although the following paintings may or may not be inspired by absinthe specifically, we would like to share them with you. Perhaps you too will be inspired to create art.
Here is French painter’s James Tissot’s “Hush!” (c.1875), which depicts an elegant French salon.
At about the same time as France was experiencing La Belle Époque, America was going through The Gilded Age, during which many beautiful American works were created. For example, here is Charles Courtney “Curran’s Lotus Lilies” (1888).
Here is Giovanni Boldini’s fantastic “Spanish Dancer at the Moulin Rouge” (c1905). In modern times, many people know of the Moulin Rouge due to the film of the same name, which appropriately for its time period, features absinthe drinking and an appearance by the green fairy.
Being inspired to create art was not always easy. Here is “The Sleeping Gypsy” (1897) by French artist Henri Rousseau. During his life, Rousseau was laughed at by critics and was very, very poor. But after he died, he was recognized as a self-taught genius. This painting of his has inspired poetry, music, artwork, and TV shows including “The Simpsons.”