Was it his struggles with tuberculosis, from age nine to his death at twenty-five, that gave Aubrey Beardsley's Nouveau, pre-Raphaelite drawings their stylized touch of the morbid? At twenty he earned his first commission, to create 300 drawings for an edition of Morte d'Arthur. The following year, 1893, Oscar Wilde's publisher hired Beardsley to create the art for the print version of Salome, which very successfully shocked certain segments of society with its sexualized images. If you're picturing a glimpse of stocking, you don't know your Victorian porn: Beardsley's blatant x-rated gay drawings are as whimsical as they are erotic. Yet it was his public association with Wilde that got him fired from the influential arts journal The Yellow Book following the latter's infamous conviction for gross indecency in 1895. After lesser editorial jobs and more enduring book commissions, Beardsley left the increasingly inhospitable England for his health. In 1898 he died in France, as Wilde would two years later.