Saturday, 3 July 2010

Lewd and Scandalous Books Exhibition II

The exhibition was being set up on friday, so I dropped in to take a look (and a few photos). I have added a few comments to each picture.

[This is the focal- and starting-point of the exhibition, the satirical engraving "The Court Gossops" which depicts a library of erotica. The engraving contains an ale glass identical to the one sitting in front of the frame (see here).]

[The exhibition is organised—largely—chronologically, so on this side we have Classical and European erotica.]

[One of the gorgeous illustrated editions of Ovid.]

[One of two editions of Nicolas Chorier's Satyra Sodatica (ca. 1660), the foundational work of European erotic literature.]

[This is edition of Diderot's Bijoux indiscrets has had the passage in (very poor) English translated into French by its original owner]

[This is on the other side of the cabinet: Restoration satires, focussing on the master Rochester (that is his portrait at the back). The edition of Rochester at the front includes a great illustration to Butler's "Dildoides."]

[As well as a number of 18C editions of Merryland, Monash has this private press reprint from the late 19C and the promotional leaflet for this edition! Just the sort of thing to warm the heart of a bibliographer.]

[Here are three of the large anatomical atlases in the exhibition. In the 18C—as well as the 19C and 20C—the anatomical accuracy, size and beauty of these engravings have resulted in them being treasured and used for all the "wrong" reasons. In Merryland Stretser calls them "bawdy prints" and jokingly refers his reader to them if they want a "Map of Merryland."]

[The two volumes at the top of this photo are extra-illustrated accounts of Elizabeth Chudleigh, Duchess of Kingston, who famously went to a masquerade ball in the character of Iphigenia, a costume that simply required her to take most of her clothes off. Such was her beauty and social standing that engravings of her "in" costume sold like hot-cakes.]

[This is the final case, which brings us back to lady Vane, the subject of "The Court Gossops."]

[UPDATE 13 July 2010: the exhibition has now gone live; you will find a blurb about the exhibition, a "virtual exhibition" (full of photos) and you can download the catalogue here]

[UPDATE: 2 July 2016: After all my pictures disappeared (again) I decided to give up on external hosts for large versions (1000px) of my image files and, for now on, will stick with the smaller images (500px), which Blogger is prepared to host.]

No comments: