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Édouard-Henri Avril (21 May 1843–1928) was a French painter and commercial artist. Under the pseudonym Paul Avril, he was an illustrator of erotic literature.Born in Algiers, Avril studied art in various Paris salons. From 1874 to 1878 he was at the École des Beaux Arts in Paris. Having been commissioned to illustrate Théophile Gautier’s novel Fortunio, he adopted the pseudonym Paul Avril. His reputation was soon established and he received many commissions to illustrate both major authors and the so-called “galante literature” of the day, a form of erotica. These books were typically sold in small editions on a subscription basis, organised by collectors. Avril illustrated such works as Gustave Flaubert’s Salammbô, Gautier’s Le Roi Caundale, John Cleland’s Fanny Hill, Mario Uchard’s Mon Oncle Barbassou (scenes in a harem), Jules Michelet’s The Madam, Hector France’s Musk, Hashish and Blood, the writings of Pietro Aretino, and the anonymous lesbian novel Gamiani. His major work was designs for De Figuris Veneris: A Manual of Classical Erotica by the German scholar Friedrich Karl Forberg.

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Édouard-Henri Avril (Argel, 21 de mayo de 1843 – Le Raincy, 1928) fue un pintor francés y artista comercial. Bajo pseudónimo era ilustrador de literatura erótica.Avril estudió arte en varios salones de París. Desde 1874 a 1878 estuvo en la “École des Beaux Arts” en París. Siendo comisionado para ilustrar la novela Fortunio de Théophile Gautier, adoptó el seudónimo Paul Avril. Pronto tuvo una cierta reputación, y recibió muchas comisiones para ilustrar autores importantes y la llamada “literatura galante” del día, de una forma erótica. Estos libros fueron vendidos típicamente en ediciones pequeñas sobre una base de la suscripción, ordenada por los colectores. Se lo considera el padre de la pintura erótica.

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