So what about paintings?
Paintings have been made since the early days of mankind. For example the cave paintings that were found in France.
Back then no one had any issues with people being depicted naked, dressed, full frontal or in any other way.
How different things are now. Paintings that show nudity can be removed because of the type of visitor showing up in the gallery or museum (remember the horror about Hylas and the Nymphs?)
Nudity in art is of all times
What spirit is so empty and blind, that it cannot recognize the fact that the foot is more noble than the shoe, and skin more beautiful that the garment with which it is clothed?
I seriously cannot wrap my mind about the fact that the nude form of people can be the subject of so much debate and controversy even in art.
We all have this one, fine layer that protects us from so much. It’s our skin. Why does that need to be hidden, stashed away as something dirty or unclean?
As you can above, even the great master Michelangelo knew this.
There are only few great, ancient painters that may not have created images of nude people. Also modern painters don’t shy away from that, and with good reason: what more beautiful can they portray than humans in their most humble, natural form?
Nudity is honest. Nudity doesn’t hide flaws. Anything not portrayed is up to the discretion and intent of the painter. This is 100% contrary to clothes, where any piece of fabric can and will be used to cover up whatever one wants.
I wonder (actually I don’t!) if the people who despise nudity in art (or anywhere else) carry that conviction from their own experience and will, or if this is all implanted through culture and upbringing.
Ancient times and nude art
The above Egyptian painting shows nude dancers at the tomb of Nembamun. It was painted around 1400 BCE. Nudity was normal back then and no one had a problem depicting something that was normal.
I want to finish this little trip (okay, I admit those are jumps) through the history of nudity in art with this painting of Cleopatra by the Italian Giampietrino, actually Giovanni Pietro Rizzoli. It was created somewhere between 1520 and 1540.
Through the ages, nudity hasn’t posed a problem. Why then, I ask, is the world suddenly churning out so many prudes and sensitive people who pale at the sight or idea of painted skin?
Questions for you.
So now I will leave you with some questions:
- What is your favourite painting? I really would like to know. They can be ancient, modern, any style.
- Who is your favourite artist?
- Do you make paintings? If so, where can we enjoy them?
Thanks for reading all the way to here.
Be happy and naked…