Rimbaud was a French poet. Born in Charleville, Ardennes, he produced his best known works while still in his late teens—Victor Hugo described him at the time as "an infant Shakespeare"—and he gave up creative writing altogether before the age of 20. As part of the decadent movement, Rimbaud influenced modern literature, music and art. He was known to have been a libertine and a restless soul, traveling extensively on three continents before his death from cancer just after his 37th birthday.
Rimbaud was encouraged by friend and office employee to write to Paul Verlaine, an eminent Symbolist poet, after letters to other poets failed to garner replies. Rimbaud and Verlaine began a short and torrid affair. By late June 1873, Verlaine grew frustrated with the relationship and returned to Paris, where he quickly began to mourn Rimbaud's absence. On 8 July, he telegraphed Rimbaud, instructing him to come to the Hotel Liège in Brussels; Rimbaud complied at once. That afternoon, "in a drunken rage," Verlaine fired two shots at Rimbaud, one of them wounding the 18-year-old in the left wrist. Rimbaud returned home to Charleville and completed his prose work Une Saison en Enfer ("A Season in Hell")—still widely regarded as one of the pioneering examples of modern Symbolist writing.
Leilani Bustamante was born in Santa Rosa California and is a graduate of the Academy of Art University. She grew up between the suburban sprawl and rural Fort Bragg, where she draws inspiration from their simultaneous decay and growth. Her work often voices themes of mortality exploring elements of death, rebirth, beauty and spoil, the loveliness of the macabre and the mournful influence of osteological motifs. She currently lives and works in San Francisco and graduated from the Academy of Art Universtiy, San Francisco.
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