Superb impression printed with considerable plate tone, as first issued. Rare.
Typical of Felicien Rops’ erotic interpretation of religious themes concerning good and evil, this image stands in direct contrast with the pretty and commercial art of the Belle Époque. Felicien Rops will have been critically aware of the potential offence which this image could cause – having been educated by the Jesuits, Félicien Rops was well versed in the Christian religion and was able to recite the gospel from memory – in Latin. When reviewing the works of Félicien Rops in 1896, the Jounal de Bruxelles wrote “we are not dealing here with little erotic scenes made for the delectation of old lechers. It is a profound, terrifying, entirely spiritual vision of the damnation of guilty flesh… Never has a Christian artist depicted with more vigour the ravages produced by evil… Rops is a true father of the infernal church.”
With Rouir’s collectors’ stamp no.61 at the lower left corner of the sheet.
On cream laid paper, watermarked MBM, with full margins and deckle edge. Very fine condition.