Sunday, May 4, 2014

Beardsley's Drawings for Wilde's Salome

These are those drawings that Beardsley made for Wilde’s infamous play, which in turn made his name.  Regrettably, Beardsley came to rue his association with Wilde, given the scandal that wrongly landed the great writer in prison.  If I remember correctly, after his release, Oscar went to France, and when Aubrey ran across him in Dieppe he snubbed him.  I suppose one must forgive the great draughtsman, as he was not at all well at the time.  In fact he was dying of Consumption.  A short time later Beardsley did his best to make it up to Wilde by having dinner with him in private. Of course it was this group of drawings that first brought Beardsley’s work to my attention, as they were very much in vogue during the late sixties, when I was an impressionable adolescent.  I’ve always marveled at how much he accomplished in so short a time and such poor health.


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