Dreams of Desire 22 (The Apparition)

L’Apparition-Gustav Moreau 1874-1876
In this gorgeous opiated phantasmagoria of a painting Gustav Moreau places the ultimate femme fatale Salome in the Byzantine opulence of Herod’s palace, the seven veils in the process of being parted, before the hallucinated head  of John the Baptist. The painting was mentioned in the breviary of Decadence J.K Huysmans A Rebours and Oscar Wilde caused a sensation with the staging of his opalescent and fantastic rendition of the biblical tale, Salome in Paris (the play was originally written in French). The painting and Moreau’s work in general was a favourite of the Surrealists as his brand of avant-garde Symbolism was a clear antecedent for the part that the unconscious plays in the creative process.