Category Archives: Decadence

The Picture of John Gray

A tale of social mobility written across a map of London

The Picture of John Gray

A tale of social mobility written across a map of London

Dress-down Friday: Rachilde

Cross-dressing as subversion – or penny-pinching

Dress-down Friday: Rachilde

Cross-dressing as subversion – or penny-pinching

Dress-down Friday: Joséphin Péladan

“Every exclusively masculine figure is lacking in grace, every exclusively feminine one is lacking in strength.”

Dress-down Friday: Joséphin Péladan

“Every exclusively masculine figure is lacking in grace, every exclusively feminine one is lacking in strength.”

Places: Clifton

In search of the Reverend Montague Summers

Places: Clifton

In search of the Reverend Montague Summers

Finding the Woman Who Didn’t Exist

“Women may have faced many limitations in nineteenth-century France, but not everyone played by the rules and Gisèle d’Estoc seems to have broken most of them at one time or another in her colorful life.”

Finding the Woman Who Didn’t Exist

“Women may have faced many limitations in nineteenth-century France, but not everyone played by the rules and Gisèle d’Estoc seems to have broken most of them at one time or another in her colorful life.”

Ancient dreams and antique corruptions

“She became, in a sense, the symbolic deity of indestructible lust, the goddess of immortal Hysteria, of accursed Beauty…”

Ancient dreams and antique corruptions

“She became, in a sense, the symbolic deity of indestructible lust, the goddess of immortal Hysteria, of accursed Beauty…”

13 books for 2013

Swordswomen, working boys, crypto-fascist poets, bohemians, Decadents, Surrealists, occultists…business as usual really.

13 books for 2013

Swordswomen, working boys, crypto-fascist poets, bohemians, Decadents, Surrealists, occultists…business as usual really.

The poet of the bats

“Did he really invent an orchestra of perfumes, an orchestra of liqueurs, on which he could play the subtlest harmonies of the senses?”

The poet of the bats

“Did he really invent an orchestra of perfumes, an orchestra of liqueurs, on which he could play the subtlest harmonies of the senses?”

Pages: Passionate Attitudes

“Beardsley, like ‘decadence’, was new, diseased and curious in form – and, like the century, he was hastening towards his end.”

Pages: Passionate Attitudes

“Beardsley, like ‘decadence’, was new, diseased and curious in form – and, like the century, he was hastening towards his end.”

Dress-down Friday: Gabriele d’Annunzio

Paradoxically, the excess d’Annunzio exhibited in most fields of activity – war, nationalism, seduction, decoration, bravado – issued from a compact package, adorned with restraint.

Dress-down Friday: Gabriele d’Annunzio

Paradoxically, the excess d’Annunzio exhibited in most fields of activity – war, nationalism, seduction, decoration, bravado – issued from a compact package, adorned with restraint.

Circles: Ludwig II/Sissi

The Austrian empress and the Bavarian king were cousins and might have been in-laws as well if Ludwig hadn’t broken off his engagement with Sissi’s sister Sophie.

Circles: Ludwig II/Sissi

The Austrian empress and the Bavarian king were cousins and might have been in-laws as well if Ludwig hadn’t broken off his engagement with Sissi’s sister Sophie.

At home with Prince Zaleski

“The hall was constructed in the manner of a Roman atrium, and from the oblong pool of turgid water in the centre a troop of fat and otiose rats fled weakly squealing at my approach.”

At home with Prince Zaleski

“The hall was constructed in the manner of a Roman atrium, and from the oblong pool of turgid water in the centre a troop of fat and otiose rats fled weakly squealing at my approach.”

D’Annunzio’s Cave

The hand-held camera makes constant scything motions as if trying to slash through the pomposity, pausing every now and then to leer in contemptuous close-up, offering up some decorative detail for mockery.

D’Annunzio’s Cave

The hand-held camera makes constant scything motions as if trying to slash through the pomposity, pausing every now and then to leer in contemptuous close-up, offering up some decorative detail for mockery.

Dreamers of Decadence

“For a long time the chimeras have slept, stifled by the images they have inspired, and for a long time the sphinxes have asked no questions.”

Dreamers of Decadence

“For a long time the chimeras have slept, stifled by the images they have inspired, and for a long time the sphinxes have asked no questions.”

A Lorrain special, part 2

It’s impossible to understand Jean Lorrain without acknowledging his self-loathing. A masochistic streak led him to provoke the ire of those he admired as much as the objects of his disdain.

A Lorrain special, part 2

It’s impossible to understand Jean Lorrain without acknowledging his self-loathing. A masochistic streak led him to provoke the ire of those he admired as much as the objects of his disdain.

A Lorrain special, part 1

A typical night might start in the opera, continue at Maxim’s, stop over in a music hall and end at dawn in the produce markets of Les Halles. At various points in his nocturnal odyssey Lorrain would be accompanied by barons, bohemians and barrow boys.

A Lorrain special, part 1

A typical night might start in the opera, continue at Maxim’s, stop over in a music hall and end at dawn in the produce markets of Les Halles. At various points in his nocturnal odyssey Lorrain would be accompanied by barons, bohemians and barrow boys.

Pearls: Joséphin Péladan

“Making the invisible visible: that is the true purpose of art and its only reason for existence.”

Pearls: Joséphin Péladan

“Making the invisible visible: that is the true purpose of art and its only reason for existence.”

Autour de Jacques

The catalogue offers much to gladden the heart of anyone interested in queer/Decadent undercurrents of the Belle Époque.

Autour de Jacques

The catalogue offers much to gladden the heart of anyone interested in queer/Decadent undercurrents of the Belle Époque.