Leon Bakst

    Setting aside for a moment the fact that the riot of patterns in his costume designs make them impossible to animate, I still get a strong animation feel from Bakst’s work.The poses he sets his characters are expressive to a degree,  never lazily repeated, and all just on the point of movement. The environment in which he worked, the court of Diaghilev at the  Les Ballets Russes ,  was as camp as it’s possible to get without actually bursting into flame. Braziers and nostrils flared, turbanned negro slaves were oiled, ocelots and jaguars strained at their leashes. It’s no surprise then that Bakst’s designs and drawings  emerge from this hot-house carrying a heavy perfume of sex and violence.


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