ErotiCart on FacebookSubscribe to our RSS FeedSubscribe to our Newsletter

Erotic Art History

33,000BC
- 330AD

Early European Erotica

Some of the earliest examples of erotic art came from Europe over 35,000 years ago in the form of ancient Venus figures. ( Learn More )

33,000 BC

Venus of Hohle Fels

Venus of Hohle Fels

The Venus of Hohle Fels is estimated to be over 35,000 years old and is not only considered to be the oldest Goddess figure ever found, but also the oldest example of figurative art known today. ( Learn More )

18,000 BC

Venus of Willendorf

Venus of Willendorf

The Venus of Willendorf is one of the oldest goddess figures ever found, and was the oldest until the Venus of Hohle Fels was discovered in 2009. ( Learn More )

800 BC

Ancient Greek Erotic Art

Ancient Greek Erotic Art

For us, nudity is often only accepted in art but discouraged in society at large. In Greece, male nudity was acceptable at the gym, at athletic meetings and at the baths and so on and therfore its portrayal is a reflection of the society rather than eroticism. ( Learn More )

700 BC

Ancient Roman Erotic Art

Ancient Roman Erotic Art

Pompeii is a ruined city in the south of Italy which is most famous for being buried over night by the unexpected eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79AD. It caused much controversy upon its rediscovery as Pompeii is covered in erotic art! ( Learn More )

400 BC

Lysistrata

Lysistrata

Lysistrata is a comedy is based around one woman, Lysistrata, who convinced the woman of Athens to withhold sexual privileges from the men until they agreed to end the war with Sparta, effectively holding the mens' libido hostage. ( Learn More )

500-1400

The Middle Ages

Censorship has been the scourge of European artists but never more so than in the Middle Ages. As we discussed earlier, the nude and eroticism were prevalent in European history right up until the appropriately named "Dark Ages." ( Learn More )

1000-1200

Sheela Na Gig

Sheela Na Gig

Sheela Na Gigs are an oddity in the history of erotic art. Not only are they thought to have been made during the Middle Ages, though they are also predominantly found around the last place we would expect; on churches!
( Learn More )

1400-1550

Renaissance Erotic Art

The Renaissance began around the 14th century simultaneously in both Northern and Southern Europe, though the North was undoubtedly influenced by their Southern counterparts. They are often referred to as the Northern Renaissance and the Southern Renaissance, since both were independent of each other, but showed the same signs of cultural awakening which is synonymous with the Renaissance. ( Learn More )

Southern Renaissance

A favored subject chosen by many artists during the Early Southern Renaissance was the promiscuous Zeus/Jupiter, King of the Gods. Often portrayed in classical art as a mighty bearded man throwing lightning bolts upon the earth. His wife (and older sister) was called Hera, the Goddess of Woman and Marriage. Ironically, her husband was not a loyal partner and was often tempted by the beautiful maidens that walked the Earth. ( Learn More )

1445-1510

Botticelli

Botticelli

Botticelli (1445 - 1510), was an Italian artist from Florence, Italy, and was one of the first artists to include the nude outside of Christian themes at the start of the Southern Renaissance. ( Learn More )

1488-1576

Titian

Titian

Titian's most famous erotic painting is the Venus of Urbino. It depicts a nude "Venus" reclining on a bed with her left hand placed against her groin while she stares directly at the viewer. ( Learn More )

1489-1534

Correggio

Correggio

Correggio is one of my favorite erotic artists of the Early Renaissance as he was the was the first to take art past modest nudity and straight into full blown eroticism! ( Learn More )

Northern Renaissance

I believe the increase in nudes and erotic art in the Northern Renaissance was partly due to the rise of free thought, partly due to the Southern Renaissance, and partly as propaganda used in a similar way sex is used in advertising today. The Catholic Church and its supporters were fighting a loosing battle against the Reformists' printed materials, and so I believe that the sudden rise of the nude in art being portrayed in a more favorable light was to attract the masses back to the church, or at least keep their attention. ( Learn More )

1472–1553

Cranach the Elder

Cranach the Elder

Despite Cranach's close relationship with the Protestant Reformation as well as the Catholic Church, he often depicted the nude in art and some of his paintings had very strong erotic elements as well, at least compared to similar works of the time. ( Learn More )

1450–1516

Hieronymus Bosch

Correggio

Little is known about the life of Hieronymus Bosch (1450 – 1516), though he was undoubtedly one of the most visionary artists of his era. ( Learn More )

1524-1550

I Modi

I Modi was a fascinating book originally printed around 1524 and perhaps one of the earliest depictions of overtly erotic art in modern Europe. Several versions have been produced since the original was made. The original I Modi was a series of 16 highly accomplished engravings by Marcantonio Raimondi, based on drawings by Giulio Romano, student of Raphael, printed from copper plates showing different sexual positions. ( Learn More )

1550

I Modi : Woodblock Edition

I Modi Woodblock

This copy's similarity to the surviving fragments leads us to believe that the copyist must have worked from an original copy of I Modi so in 1550 there was at least one full copy of the original I Modi still in existence. ( Learn More )

1550-1800

After The Renaissance

The Renaissance rather smoothly flowed into the next historical period in art known as Mannerism, which later developed into the Baroque Period, which later developed into the Rococo style.

I'm merging these styles here since none of these movements had clear cut beginnings or endings, rather they were all part of the same smooth transition from the Renaissance to what we know as art today. ( Learn More )

1503–1572

Agnolo Bronzino

Agnolo Bronzino

Agnolo Bronzino was a Florentine artist born around 1503 whose style is an excellent example of Mannerism. He had an obvious love of the female form and often found excuses to include them prominently in many of his paintings. ( Learn More )

1606-1669

Rembrandt

Rembrandt

Rembrandt van Rijn was a Dutch painter and draftsman. Most are familiar with his paintings, and his portraits in particular, but Rembrandt was a master of many mediums including draftsmanship and etching. ( Learn More )

1703-1770

Francois Boucher

Francois Boucher

Many of Francois Boucher's early nudes were tangled up in mythological allegory to avoid criticism though as can be seen from his "Odelisques" and other works, especially "The Bolt", he later transitioned to more open eroticism. ( Learn More )

1740-1814

Marquis de Sade

Marquis de Sade

Marquis de Sade (1740 - 1814) is famous for both his perverse erotic literature as well as philosophy. His name "Sade" (pronounced "Saad") is the origin of the word Sadism. ( Learn More )

1800-1900

1800s Erotic Art

Art after the Rococo period art began an accelerated evolution. New styles began cropping up all over Europe, and the first art museums were opening (the first being in 1764) sharing fine art with the common man. Most importantly, the Louvre opened in 1794 after the French Revolution which marked the beginning of art moving from the private collections of the aristocracy and into the public eye. From the 1800s, art belonged to the people. ( Learn More )

1825-1905

William Bouguereau

William Bouguereau

Bouguereau was dedicated traditionalist and was an unparalleled master of anatomy. He is best known for his life size nudes of mythological figures and his photorealistic style. ( Learn More )

1819-1877

Gustave Courbet

Gustave Courbet

Best known as an innovator in Realism (and credited with coining the term), Courbet was a painter of figurative compositions, landscapes and seascapes. He also worked with social issues, and addressed peasantry and the grave working conditions of the poor. ( Learn More )

1850

Count de Waldeck's I Modi

Count de Waldeck I Modi

As well as the fragments of the original I Modi, there is hidden away in the British Museum's infamous "Cupboard 205" another erotic portfolio that has strong links to the original. This edition is a series of erotic drawings by Count de Waldeck. ( Learn More )

1834–1917

Edgar Degas

Edgar Degas

This voyeuristic series of nudes confused Degas' critics. When depicting nudes, it was traditional to use some kind of historical or mythological setting, however Degas' nudes showed woman in a contemporary setting. ( Learn More )

1600-1900

Erotic Printmakers

Prints have been a popular medium for artists for centuries, from the basic woodblock prints of the Japanese, to the sophisticated lithography techniques of the Europeans. ( Learn More )

1603-1867

Shunga

Shunga

Shunga was a popular style of erotic woodblock printing in Japan during the Edo period. ( Learn More )

1756-1827

Thomas Rowlandson

Thomas Rowlandson

Thomas Rowlandson was born in Old Jewry, in the City of London, the son of a tradesman or city merchant in 1756. He is well known for his caricatures though also produced many fine erotic drawings and paintings during the early 1800s. ( Learn More )

1800-1900

Erotic Lithography

Erotic Lithography

Lithography is an ingenious printing process which involves a plate coated with hydrophobic and hydrophilic chemicals so that when ink is applied to the plate it doesn't stick to the hydrophobic regions and moves to the hydrophilic regions. ( Learn More )

1827-1906

Mihaly Zichy

Mihaly Zichy

Mihály Zichy was a significant representative of Hungarian romantic painting. During his law studies in Pest from 1842, he attended Jakab Marastoni's school as well. ( Learn More )

1833-1898

Felicien Rops

Felicien Rops

Felicien Rops worked in many mediums and was also a master printmaker utilising various technique. He was originally trained in lithography by the University of Brussels, but went on to produces engravings and etchings as well. ( Learn More )

1843-1928

Paul Avril

Paul Avril

Paul Avril was a French erotic artist who is best known for his paintings and illustrations for various erotic novels including Amours Du Chevalier de Fabulas, Atala - René - Le Dernier Abencerage, The Book of Expositions, Daphnis et Chloe and dozen of other titles. ( Learn More )

1863-1926

Martin van Maele

Martin van Maele

Martin van Maele was a French erotic illustrator. He is renowned for his work in the field of erotic literature as well as non erotic literature. ( Learn More )

1866–1924

Franz von Bayros

Franz von Bayros

Marquis Franz von Bayros's illustrations are noted for their intricate detail, as well as their hidden eroticism which is often combined with objects and architecture in the background of his images. ( Learn More )

1872–1898

Aubrey Beardsley

Aubrey Beardsley

Beardsley was a public character as well as a private eccentric. He said, "I have one aim—the grotesque. If I am not grotesque I am nothing." ( Learn More )

20th Century Erotic Art

There were so many art styles during the 20th century that it we would need another website to document them all.

Below is a sample or the erotic artists and their erotic art over the last 100 years.

1840–1917

Auguste Rodin

Auguste Rodin

Most are familiar with his sculptures though he worked in many mediums. He also painted in oils and in watercolours. The Musée Rodin holds 7,000 of his drawings and prints, in chalk and charcoal, and thirteen vigorous drypoints. ( Learn More )

1862-1918

Gustav Klimt

Gustav Klimt

"All art is erotic" Gustav Klimt was an Austrian artist from Vienna who was one of the pioneers of Symbolism and Art Nouveau who is best known for his paintings though was also an incredibly prolific draughtsman. ( Learn More )

1890-1918

Egon Schiele

Egon Schiele

In his short career Schiele painted portraits of the Vienna elite, was a pioneer of Expressionism with both his portraits and his landscapes, and was one of the most prolific draughtsman of erotic art in the early 20th century. ( Learn More )

1956-Present

Anthony Christian

Anthony Christian

"I paint for many reasons; one of them is to educate, and I hope by the beauty and integrity of my work that I may teach people the difference between pornography and great Art, and shatter the last shackles bonding those imprisoned by ignorance or hypocrisy." ( Learn More )



Copyright © 2014 ErotiCart.
Parse Time: 0.150 - Number of Queries: 40 - Query Time: 0.031608747451782