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Pierre Klossowski

EVEN IN DEATH, Pierre Klossowski was inevitably linked with his younger brother, the painter Balthus. Almost all obituaries of the artist, writer, and translator, who died in Paris this August at age ninety-six, mentioned that his more famous sibling had died only six months earlier. Both vied in wry self-deprecation: Balthus summed up his own painting by saying, “I do surrealism in the style of Courbet,” while Klossowski claimed to be no artist, writer, thinker, or philosopher “but first, foremost, and always, a monomaniac.” His monomania consisted of a remarkably free expression of Sadeian erotic imagery in writing and drawings. This integration of frankly pornographic scenarios with philosophical and literary concerns made him attractive to writers like Georges Bataille and Pierre Jean Jouve, and later Michel Foucault and Gilles Deleuze. As a draftsman, Klossowski made an endless number

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