A Salacious And Shocking Aubrey Beardsley Exhibition Is Coming To London

A Salacious And Shocking Aubrey Beardsley Exhibition Is Coming To London
Design for the Frontispiece to John Davidson’s Plays, 1894

He was utterly salacious, totally scandalous, often grotesque. He was also dead at 25. Now, the Victorian boy wonder, Aubrey Beardsley, is getting his biggest exhibition in 50 years.

In March 2020, over 200 of the controversy-courting Beardsley's works appear at Tate Britain. It's the first exhibition dedicated to him at the Tate since 1923.

An illustration from Lysistrata

Have your mind truly boggled, your cheeks truly blushed, by Beardsley's pen and ink masterpieces, including celebrated illustrations for Le Morte d'Arthur, Lysistrata and Oscar Wilde’s Salomé.

Messalina and her Companion, 1895

The exhibition also shows artworks that inspired Beardsley's brief, but potent career, including Japanese scrolls and watercolours by Edward Burne-Jones and Gustave Moreau.

The Climax, from Oscar Wilde’s Salomé

Some of this may have outraged the Victorians — but it's pretty damned risque in the 21st century too.

Tate's Britain's Aubrey Beardsley exhibition runs from 4 March-25 May 2020. Prices and booking details will be announced shortly.

Last Updated 13 May 2019