Something different for today. Yesterday I was discussing with some friends about definitive stamps from France. As you probably know, since years now, the French definitive stamp pictures Marianne, the female allegory of the republic. We were discussing which “Marianne” stamps we prefer. Mine is this one.
This is the one we call “Marianne de Cocteau” because it has been designed by Jean Cocteau (1888-1963), the famous French poet and artist. The stamp has been engraved by Albert Decaris. This Marianne has been issued in 1961 and sold until 1967. At this time it has disconcerted the critics because of its design which is very disruptive compared to the previous and following ones. This stamp was also a technical challenge because of its size and the fact that it is recess-printed with three colours. The design of this Marianne was reused in 1982 for a commemorative stamp celebrating Philex France 82 a philatelic exhibition.
I have always been interested and impressed by the work of Jean Cocteau. When I was young, I was highly impressed by his movies : The eternal return (1943), The beauty and the beast (1946), The eagle with two heads (1848) , Orpheus (1950)… I like his universe. I guess this is why I like his Marianne. I like it also because it is so different compared to the other ones that have a much more traditional design.