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Félicien Rops

1833 – 1898

L’Incantation by Félicien Rops

L’Incantation   1909

  Aquatint and soft ground etching by Albert Bertrand after Félicien Rops, printed in colours.
With the artist’s name in the image.
Exsteens 860 xii-xiii/xiii; Rouir vol.III, p.694
S 507 x 325 mm; P 430  x 275 mm; I 320 x 205 mm
Brilliant proof impression with totally fresh, unfaded colours. An unnumbered proof aside from the normal edition, after the remarque had been effaced but prior to the normal edition of 200 numbered impressions (50 proofs had been printed with the remarque). The plates for this work were destroyed immediately after the main edition had been printed.

In the overtly erotic imagery of Félicien Rops’s art, pagan and satanic Symbolism become inextricably entwined. Felicien Rops interpreted the Christian teachings of his strict Jesuit upbringing with his own cynical humour to produce some of the most memorable images to combine Satanism and eroticism together.

This inspired depiction of alchemy, described by Exsteens as “une des œuvres magistrales de l’artiste”, is undoubtedly one of the best known of all of Felicien Rops’ images. Based upon Félicien Rops’ drawing and monochrome soft ground etching of much earlier date, Albert Bertrand’s colour aquatint is both the most striking rendition of the subject and a superb specimen of colour printmaking. An aged alchemist sits with a volume entitled Compendium Maleficarum spread open before him, surrounded by symbols of the black arts, of the fall of man, and of erotic temptation. Before him, the unblemished figure of a saintly lady, conjured to life through his incantation, emerges from a painting, disrobing herself for his pleasure. L’Incantation is an inspired representation of desires fulfilled and one of the truly great images of erotic art.

This outstanding colour aquatint and soft ground etching made by Albert Bertrand for Gustave Pellet after the death of Félicien Rops is now one of the most sought after of all of Felicien Rops' works.

On cream wove paper with full magins and deckle edge. Very fine condition.