Charles Baudelaire’s groundbreaking 1857 poetry volume, Les fleurs du mal (The Flowers of Evil) was for Orazi, as for so many other illustrators, the perfect vehicle for unleashing both his imagination and a wide range of subject matter.
This 1934 edition includes all of Baudelaire’s poems from the collection, including those that were banned by French censors for nearly a century. All deal with themes relating to decadence and eroticism, the six sections being Spleen et idéal (Spleen and Ideal), Tableaux parisiens (Parisian Scenes), Le Vin (Wine), Fleurs du mal (Flowers of Evil), Révolte (Revolt), and La mort (Death).
As well as many full-page illustrations, Orazi also created wonderful title pages and tailpieces for each of the six sections, interweaving motifs of death and desire in a powerful and disturbing sequence of imagery. It is altogether the erotic masterpiece of a talented and inventive artist-illustrator.
The Orazi-illustrated Fleurs du mal was published by Le Vasseur in a numbered limited edition of 495 copies.