The Louvre Museum holds something like 380,000 pieces of art, with 35,000 on display. Over 15,000 people visit it every day. It is overwhelming.
Yesterday was my second visit to the place, and I was determined it would be better than the first. We had a list of maybe twenty works we wanted to see, including the stele of the Code of Hammurabi. But the place is only generally organized, and lacking expertise we were quickly lost. It is maybe a few football fields long (guessing),two wings and two floors per wing with many side rooms and a basement. There is no centralized location to look up various works, no computerized guides. In a constant roar of people, fatigue quickly sets in. After maybe 90 minutes, I thought Hammurabi was not a big deal, not worth the trouble.
The above painting caught my eye. At first I thought I would call it “Fat Chicks,” but then thought better of it. I was going to use the French translation of Thunder Thighs, but it turns out the the French Translation, according to my iPhone translation program, is … Thunder Thighs.
My how tastes have changed over time, how our notion of beauty differs now from a few hundred years ago.
And what a classy guy am I.
9 thoughts on “Fat chicks”
Tastes haven’t changed- access has. In olden days only the King could get a cream filled croissant in the middle of the night if he had such a hankerin’. Now any old slob can hop in his car and pop down to the 7-11 and load up on Little Debbie’s.
Back when, if the King wanted thunder thighs in paint, he got them. Today a quick dance through the internets will get you thighs in any shape, size and flavor you desire. FC’s have never gone out of fashion but with gay men running the fashion industry, women don’t know this.
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The ladies off to the upper right appear thinner. I did not check the date of this painting. I am wondering which Louis had the fat girl fetish. IX is St. Louis, so not him. XIV, XV, XVI are the only others I know about.
That painting looks fairly modern, Impressionist era.. maybe someone influenced by Rubens? He’s the one who gave us “Rubenesque women” of course..
It’s Les Baigneuses (The Bathers) by Auguste Renoir (1919) His last painting. You must have been in the Musée d’Orsay.
Even so, it’s a spin on the image of the odalisque, a chamber maid in the employ of a brothel or a sultan. The image of a well fed naked woman in repose comes, imo, from the Turkish influence on Venice. The odalisque was the Playboy centerfold of the time. The courts of the last two Louis’ flipped the image and had the gal lying face down/up, with her ample posterior arched and open for business as the preferred arrangement.
The Rueben’s fetish for adipose spread within the secular art markets of the north where women naturally retained weight in the colder climates, though now the models could drop trou for the patron.
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It was definitely at the Louvre, as at Musee d’Orsay I was careful to photograph both the information and the work of art. At the Louvre I was frustrated and tired, saw the painting and took a photo, but knew nothing of the artist or the time. So I will take your word that it is Les Baigneuses by Renoir.
My ‘impression’ was that Musee d’Orsay had everything from about Manet on, but I’ve never been to Paris save Google Earth so I’ll take your word for it. How’s the food?
The only Manet I saw was the Picnic, at Louvre. They have a whole room devoted to Monet, plus we went to L’Orangerie, where Monet’s Water Lilies dominate entire rooms, massive pieces. Renoir has his own room there, his impressionist works. The smaller museums are much more enjoyable.
Food? We could, if we wanted, spend a bucket of cash on each meal, but then we would be broke and would get hungry again. So we go with basic street fare, any place that offers a beer and pizza Marguerite. We stumbled into a Greek place, and my wife ordered the onion soup, which turned out to be vegetable soup, which she loved. Otherwise, pretty ordinary fare for us.
Was in Paris shortly after 9-11 so it has been a while. It seemed the Louvre swallowed up the paintings. The Old Picture Gallery in Munich was much more enjoyable.
The food in both places was so much better than in America back then. Fresh bread without preservatives. Simple but nourishing.
Renoir.. d’oh. I knew I recognized the artist, just couldn’t place the name, and wasn’t sure if it was just another impressionist. Thanks.