If sensuality had a name, it would be without doubt Utamaro. Delicately underlining the 'Garden of Pleasures' that once constituted Edo, Utamaro, by the richness of his fabrics, the swan-like necks of the women, the mysterious looks, evokes in a few lines the sensual pleasure of the Orient.
If some scenes discreetly betray lovers’ games, a great number of his shungas recall that love in Japan is first and foremost erotic.
Edmond de Goncourt was a French writer belonging to the Naturalist movement. He was friends with Zola, Flaubert, and Daudet. From 1850, he wrote on art history with his brother. Together, they were the witnesses of the artistic life of the second half of the 19th century. His last will was to create a literary academy to honour the memory of this brother. The Goncourt Prize is today the most prestigious literary distinction in France.
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