Félicien Rops

Belgium / 1833 - 1898 / wikipedia / dangerousminds.net
There are few 19th century artists as controversial or as profoundly shocking as Félicien Rops. Even more than a century after his death, his “blasphemous erotica” can still cause great offense in a world of safe spaces and trigger warnings.... Rops’ work has been described as blasphemous, sadistic, sexist, misogynistic.... (http://dangerousminds.net/comments/blasphemy_sex_satanism_and_sadism_the_diabolic_erotic_art_of_felicien_rops)

Félicien Rops (7 July 1833- 23 Aug.1898); Belgian artist, known primarily as a printmaker in etching and aquatint.

.... He produced a number of etchings as illustrations for books by Charles de Coster. In 1862 he went to Paris where he met the etchers Félix Bracquemond and Jules Ferdinand Jacquemart. His activity as a lithographer ceased about 1865, and he became a restless experimenter with etching techniques.

Rops met Charles Baudelaire towards the end of the poet's life in 1864, and Baudelaire left an impression upon him that lasted until the end of his days. Rops created the frontispiece for Baudelaire's Les Épaves, a selection of poems from Les Fleurs du mal that had been censored in France, and which therefore was published in Belgium.

His association with Baudelaire won his work the admiration of many other writers, including Théophile Gautier, Alfred de Musset, Stéphane Mallarmé, Jules Barbey d’Aurevilly, and Joséphin Péladan. He was closely associated with the literary movement of Symbolism and Decadence.

Like the works of the authors whose poetry he illustrated, his work tends to mingle sex, death, and Satanic images. According to Edith Hoffmann, the "erotic or frankly pornographic" nature of much of Rops's work" is....

Rops often combined soft-ground etching—a technique practiced by few artists of his day—with mezzotint or aquatint, and sometimes added hand-coloring to his plates. His etchings... influenced many younger artists, including Munch and Max Klinger.
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Wendy Wauters


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