Pierre Klossowski


1905 - 2001

Né à Paris (France).

Pierre Klossowski was a French writer, translator and artist. He was the older brother of the artist Balthazar Klossowski, better known as Balthus. Pierre Klossowski claimed to be no artist, writer, thinker, or philosopher "but first, foremost, and always, a monomaniac." His monomania consisted of a remarkably free expression of Sadeian erotic imagery in writing and drawings. This integration of frankly pornographic scenarios with philosophical and literary concerns made him attractive to writers like Georges Bataille and Pierre Jean Jouve, and later Michel Foucault and Gilles Deleuze. As a draftsman, Klossowski made an endless number of clumsy, large-scale images in graphite or colored pencil, typically showing, for instance, a clergyman fondling an ado lescent boy, or a nude woman tied to a bed while a dwarf and another man both make plays for her. The key word here is "plays"--the work of both Balthus and Klossowski was much imbued with theatrical imagery, a legacy of the productions they'd seen in childhood. Klossowski stated, "My drawings, like my texts, are of a dramaturgical order.... For me, the most authentic vision of what I do is in what I show."

- Benjamin Ivry

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