Monsieur Romain Coolus
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ldewey's picture


Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec’s unfinished sketch of Monsieur Romain Coolus is a testament to his fame.

It’s every artist’s dream: you become so damn famous that even your unfinished sketches are selected to hang in museums. Henri Toulouse-Lautrec takes this fame a step further with an entire museum dedicated to his works-- incomplete and all.

This colorful painting of writer Romain Coolus is one of many doodles that Toulouse-Lautrec did of his many artist friends in Montmartre, Paris. There, Henri threw lavish dinner parties where he served his signature cocktail, Tremblement de Terre (Earthquake). This lethal drink boasts three parts Absinthe and three parts Cognac, leaving no question as to why this lovely sketch might have gone unfinished. 

Along with knockout cocktails, Toulouse-Lautrec liked to prepare rather exotic fare for his guests. Fresh herons, juicy squirrels, and entire sheep were sent in from the family estate in the south of France. Mustachioed Monsieur Coolus should count himself lucky after a feast like that-- if he even remembers it!