The Marquis de Sade by Charles Van Loo, 1760–62
By ADRIAN TAHOURDIN
It’s just over 200 years since Sade’s death (December 2, 1814), and the divine Marquis is far from being consigned to outer darkness, as many would wish. In fact, the date has been acknowledged in the recent opening of an exhibition in Paris, at the Musée d’Orsay no less, Sade: Attacking the sun, curated by the Sade specialist Annie Le Brun. It’s on until January 25, 2015. I haven’t been able to see it, but note that Le Monde’s art critic Philippe Dagen, who describes it as “exploring Sade’s “impact on the visual arts”, rates the show as “exceptional”. The museum’s website warns, however, that “the violent nature of some of the works and documents may shock some visitors”.