Female Artists and the nude:

Moderators: Enigma, Sonic#

Post Reply
Endymion

Posts: 49
Joined: Wed Dec 20, 0:03 2017
Contact:

Female Artists and the nude:

Post by Endymion » Sat Jun 15, 7:31 2019

At least in the past women were discouraged from depicting the nude and as a result of this and that there was many fewer professional female artists as compared to male artists, there are not many known examples of female artists depicting the nude. Many people may just assume that any nude image they see was done by a man, but that is not so. While being in the minority nudes were produced by female artists and many of them I feel are beautiful. Also it is my impression that female artists depict more diverse nude subjects. As the title indicates there will be images of nudes in this topic. My plan is to show both female and males nudes, most of which would be of the type that would be displayed in museums or normal art galleries and many if not most are displayed in museums. I do not want to shock people or cause distress. Some of the pictures I will post in the topic, but if I feel if an image is too explicit for some I will link to is and put a description of the image so people can chose to view it or not.

To start with here is an image of a large (9’ 8” x 12’ 5”) painting entitled “Bacchanal” or sometimes “The Triumph of Bacchus” or “The Procession of Bacchus” that was painted c. 1650 to c.1656 by, in current times, the little known artist Michaelina Wautier.

Image

It was rediscovered by the art historian Katlijne Van der Stighelen in a museum storeroom during the 1990s. To me this is a very well constructed painting with a good sense of motion. The subjects appear to be progressing in a realistic manner from the woods on the right to the somewhat clouded sky on the left. Also there is a strong feeling of the weight of Bacchus. An interesting aspect to the painting is that the artist depicted herself, starring out at the viewer on the right, among all of these nude or somewhat nude drunken men. A likeness can be seen when comparing her image in the large painting with the artist’s “self-portrait with easel” from the 1640s, below. She is showing herself to be part of this Bacchanal.

Image

This painting along with approximately thirty others by the artist were recently exhibited (2018) at the Museum aan de Stroom and the Rubenshuis, in Antwerp, Belgium. Michealina Wautier was born in Mons, Belgium, in 1604. Other of her paintings had been attributed to male artists, but in searching through records Katlijne Van der Stighelen discovered that they were actually done by this artist. Michealina Wautier’s works also include Saint John the Evangelist (c.1655), Portrait of a young man (1653), Everyone his fancy, Portrait of Two Girls as the Saints Agnes and Dorothy and The mystic marriage of Saint Catherine (1649), as well as a Self Portrait (1647). As in “Bacchanal” the artist is accomplished in her depictions of expressions and details particularly in her Portrait of Two Girls as the Saints Agnes and Dorothy and her painting of the two boys with one blowing bubbles (see here for a video slide show with music of some of the artist’s paintings – 2 minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jWC92UNOVjg. Note the depiction of the bubble in the later painting as well as the depiction of the grape liquid being squeezed into the mouth of the already drunken Bacchus. It is a shame that this artist’s works had been ignored or incorrectly attributed to other artists for so long and that the painting “Bacchanal” had been hidden in a storeroom.

According to an article Katlijne Van der Stighelen “. . . questions whether Michaelina may also [along with her brother] have had access to live models through an Academy established in Brussels in 1650 – despite the fact that women were only admitted to the Academy in the 19th century – due to the accomplished anatomy shown in her monumental ‘Triumph of Bacchus’’” See here: https://hyperallergic.com/455577/the-cr ... a-wautier/.

Tom,

To be continued
See here for a topic on Women in history: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50838

See here for a topic on Female Singers: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=50851.

See here for a topic on Female Artists and the Nude: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50860

Endymion

Posts: 49
Joined: Wed Dec 20, 0:03 2017
Contact:

Re: Female Artists and the nude:

Post by Endymion » Fri Jun 21, 8:11 2019

Born near Paris in 1775, Angelique Mongez produced many works of historical subject matter with at least two of them containing male nudes. The first of these was the 1806 “Theseus and Pirithous Clearing the Earth of Brigands, Deliver Two Women from the Hands of their Abductors” (1806, ). Below is a chalk drawing (23.3 feet by 29.5 feet) of that oil on canvas painting, which is now in Russia.

Image

This is a dynamic image with the action flowing from the right to the left and slightly upward. Its strength comes not only from Theseus and Pirithous, but also from the two horses as well as from the leaning tree in the upper right. One of the things that interest me in this work is that the two heroes are nude while the bad guys are clothed. The male nude is a sign of a protector. I do recognize that the situation being depicted is one of a damsel in distress, but it does not have to be perfect to be good.

Next is a black and white image of the painting “The Oath of the Seven Against Thebes” (1826, 10.5 by 14 feet, oil on canvas):

Image

Here is a portrait of Angelique Mongez:

Image

Other paintings by the artist are Astyanax Torn from the Arms of His Mother (shown at the Salon in 1802) and Alexander Mourning the Death of the Wife of Darius (shown in 1804, for which she won a gold medal). She also produced the paintings Orpheus in Hell (1808), The Death of Adonis (1810) and Mars and Venus (1814, see below). In this last painting Mars may have been originally depicted nude, with an 1841 version showing him clothed.

Image

Further because Angelique Mongez was a woman could not show her works for judgment at the Prix de Rome.

Tom,

To be continued
Last edited by Endymion on Wed Jul 3, 8:26 2019, edited 1 time in total.
See here for a topic on Women in history: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50838

See here for a topic on Female Singers: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=50851.

See here for a topic on Female Artists and the Nude: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50860

Endymion

Posts: 49
Joined: Wed Dec 20, 0:03 2017
Contact:

Re: Female Artists and the nude:

Post by Endymion » Wed Jun 26, 9:24 2019

Aleah Chapin is a painter who was born in Seattle, Washington. Since 2011 she has concentrated on producing paintings of nude older women, with some of these paintings being large. She writes that “The individuals I paint come from my life. They are my aunties, my cousins, my mother, my friends; old and new. They are mothers, writers, dancers, singers, entrepreneurs, musicians, photographers, activists, painters, sculptors, scientists, biologists, funeral directors, goat farmers, book keepers, jewelry designers, coders, doulas, landscape designers, astrologists, fashions designers, actors and film makers.” She has had a number of sole exhibitions of her paintings, both in New York City and in London. The first of these exhibitions was in 2013 and was entitled Aunties Project. She has also participated in group exhibitions including Aging Pride and Women Painting Women: In Earnest both in 2017. This link goes to a picture of the artist along with one of her works – “The Tempest” (2013), Oil on canvas – and a short biography about her: http://www.aleahchapin.com/about.

The following link goes to a video (8 minutes) showing Aleah Chapin being interviewed. In the interview the artist states that “I think I’ve always been pretty in love with the human form and maybe obsessed with painting the human form . . .” In the background of the video one can see many of her paintings. See here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fs5RMas-qEw.

Next is a video showing the artist’s paintings along with music. Some are close-ups and most are of women (3 ½ minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C4gOHGwfRpY.

The artist’s website can be reached at this link: http://www.aleahchapin.com/. By clicking on +paintings the viewer can access many of Aleah Chapin’s nudes going back to 2011. Most are female nudes, but there are some male nudes.

Tom,

To be continued
See here for a topic on Women in history: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50838

See here for a topic on Female Singers: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=50851.

See here for a topic on Female Artists and the Nude: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50860

Endymion

Posts: 49
Joined: Wed Dec 20, 0:03 2017
Contact:

Re: Female Artists and the nude:

Post by Endymion » Wed Jul 3, 8:30 2019

The artist Angelica Kauffmann was born in 1741, in Switzerland and lived at various times in Italy and England. She painted in the neo-classical style and at times painted nudes including the male nude.

Cupid is normally depicted as a child, but the story of “Cupid and Psyche” is a love story between the two title characters, so when depicting this story Cupid is sometimes shown as a youth or young man. Also, the name “Amor” is sometimes substituted for Cupid. They both refer to the same god. At least two of Angelica Kauffmann’s paintings illustrate the story of “Cupid and Psyche” and in these pictures the artist paints Cupid or Amor as a nude young man.
First “Amor and Psyche” (1792):

Image

This picture illustrates a scene from the story where psyche having opened the jar on her lap has fallen into a deep sleep.

And
“The Legend of Cupid and Psyche” (1800)

Image

In this painting the three women to the right are Psyche and her sisters. An invisible Cupid is observing them.

In Mythology, Ganymede was a beautiful male. Angelica Kauffmann’s image of “Aphrodite, Amor and Ganymede” (c. 1780) shows Amor (Cupid), in the center of the picture, as the child he is generally portrayed as, a draped Ganymede depicted as a young man to the right and a mostly clothed Aphrodite to the left.

Image

Selene was the goddess of the moon in the classical Greek myths. One myth has Selene (sometimes called Diana in this myth), as she traveled across the darken sky spy Endymion a beautiful mortal young man asleep in a field. Selene was then so taken by this young man’s beauty that she stopped just long enough to give him a kiss. Angelica Kauffmann’s painting of that kiss depicts Endymion in the nude lounging on a red cape with a shepherd’s crook and Selene or Diana to the right.

Image

For a long time I couldn’t figure out who the person in the shadows to the left was, but now it seems that he is a Satyr symbolizing lust, so this female artist shows the female Selene lusting after the beautiful nude male Endymion. Eventually Selene has Endymion put into an eternal sleep so he would not age and so she can visit him every night forever or at least long enough for her to have 40 daughters. There are various versions of this myth particularly as to why and who puts Endymion to sleep.

Another of Angelica Kauffmann’s paintings is “Portrait of Prince Henri Lubomirski as Cupid”. In this picture the prince as cupid is neither shown as a young man, nor a young child, but as a boy. This painting shows the prince nude except for a stray piece of red cloth across his lap.

In the past women artists, with some exceptions, generally did not make use of the nude as much as male artists did, either because the women are not allowed equal access, were discouraged from studies of the nude or chose not to study from the nude. The following statement from Laurie Schneider Adams’ book, “A History of Western Art” page 380 indicates this was also the case for Angelica Kauffmann:

“Kauffmann was a member of the Accademia di San Luca in Rome from 1765, but, as a woman, was excluded from figure drawing classes.”

Further, in his book “Art, a History of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture” Frederick Hartt writes the following on page 858:

“Like other women painters, Kauffmann was forbidden to work from the nude, either male or female, and related that all the life studies she ever made were from models draped by sheets, in the presence of her father.”

Angelica Kauffmann was successful during her life time and was one of the founders of the Royal Academy of Art. She is reported to have been a child prodigy.

Here is a link to a video slideshow, with music, of Angelica Kauffmann’s other works (4 minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4XuBp3s_M8I.

Tom,

To be continued
See here for a topic on Women in history: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50838

See here for a topic on Female Singers: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=50851.

See here for a topic on Female Artists and the Nude: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50860

Endymion

Posts: 49
Joined: Wed Dec 20, 0:03 2017
Contact:

Re: Female Artists and the nude:

Post by Endymion » Wed Jul 10, 8:06 2019

Harriet Whitney Frishmuth, was a sculptress born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1880. She produced a large number of female nudes and some male nudes. Her largest works are female nudes, which appear to me to be in the art nouveau style (soft curves). Following are links to two videos (both 2 minutes long) showing the artist’s 1924 life size work “The Vine” at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. The first has commentary by curator Thayer Tolles. Also seen in the video is a photograph of the artists, along with some of her smaller works, including her 1921 work “The Dancers” a male and female nude, as well as a black and white photograph of the model for "The Vine" Desha Delteil nude. Desha Delteil was a ballet dancer for Fokine Ballet: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hYSn5yv4ZkU. The second was also filmed at the Met and shows the dancer/choreographer Francesca Harper, dancing alongside The Vine: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I5vL5FtLPYA.

The third link goes to a video showing Harriet Frishmuth’s 1928 work, “The Bubble” at the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas. It is narrated by Rachel Nard: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cJvgRAKrGnw.

Other female nudes done by the artist are:

“Joy of the Waters” (1912) http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_rNlQGTcbROE/S ... CN0947.jpg,

“The Hunt” (1921) http://d1k217qge1tz5p.cloudfront.net/im ... /01187.jpg,

“Chest of the Wave” (1925) http://www.newfocuson.com/uploads/items ... th-274.jpg and

“Call of the Sea” (1924) http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_rNlQGTcbROE/S ... CN0951.jpg.

One of her male nudes is: “Slavonic Dancer” (1921) modeled by the ballet dancer Leon Barte also of the Fokine Ballet https://www.metmuseum.org/toah/images/h ... .106.3.jpg.

Her work “Rhapsody” (1925) is of both a male and female nude: http://media.liveauctiongroup.net/i/449 ... 7EE1717B80.

Tom,

To be continued
See here for a topic on Women in history: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50838

See here for a topic on Female Singers: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=50851.

See here for a topic on Female Artists and the Nude: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50860

Endymion

Posts: 49
Joined: Wed Dec 20, 0:03 2017
Contact:

Re: Female Artists and the nude:

Post by Endymion » Wed Jul 17, 6:36 2019

Born in Hammersmith, England in 1859, Henrietta Rae painted subjects dealing with classic legends, many of these nudes, but as far as I know only painted one in which a nude male was depicted. This is “Zephyrus Wooing Flora” (c. 1888).

Image

In this work the artist positioned her figures so as to form a great swirl of action running from Zephyrus down to Flora then around via the drapery to the upper left. The young man’s body envelops that of the woman and while they don’t touch they are in a virtual embrace as they gaze in each other’s eyes. The flowers in the hair of both figures and those scattered on the ground and laying across Flora’s lap add charm to the picture, while the expressions of the figures show a kindness and even lovingness toward each other. Zephyrus’ wings add drama to the image and I like the flowers in his hair.

Between 1892 and 1894 Henrietta Rae worked on the painting “Psyche Before the Throne of Venus.” This large painting (ten feet by six feet, four inches) contains approximately 14 figures, all female. The figures are mainly in two groups, the smaller near the prostrated, half naked figure of Psyche to the lower right and the larger near the nude figure of Venus on her throne to the left. This scene illustrates the part of the story where Psyche, a mortal, in an attempt to find her husband, Cupid, comes before the goddess. At this point Psyche is so desperate that she puts herself in this position even though she was doubtful of success and fearful that going before the angry Venus might be fatal to her, thus the expression of anguish and desperation shown by the young mortal woman.

Image

This is the artist’s 1903 painting “The Sirens”

Image

And here is her 1904 “Songs of the Morning:

Image

In myth the young Hylas was one of the Argonauts, who when he was sent to get water he was abducted by a group of Nymphs because of his beauty. Here is Henrietta Rae’s version of that event:

Image

This is Henrietta Rae’s “Spring” (c. 1900). It is not a nude, but I like it:

Image

In regard to the artist’s nudes the author Arthur Fish writes in his book “Henrietta Rae” (1905): “As paintings of the nude, of course, they attracted a certain amount of adverse criticism . . . One of these self-constituted guardians of artists’ and the public’s morals wrote to Mrs. Normand [Henrietta Rae’s married name] as a new exhibitor; implored her ‘to pause upon the brink’ and not pervert her artistic gifts of painting such works” (page 36).

Also in his book Mr. Fish book states that “when Mrs. Normand gained entrance to the Royal Academy Schools [in 1877], women students were not allowed to draw from the undraped model,” (page 11) but the following quote from the book suggests that Henrietta Rae was able to gain that experience outside of the school: “To supply the deficiency of the Academy School in respect to women students and the study from the undraped model, a proposal was made by Miss Margaret Dicksee to her fellow students that they should form a life class of their own on co-operative principles. The proposal was enthusiastically received, and the class instituted in Mr. Dicksee’s studio in Fitzroy Square” (page 26).

Tom,

To be continued
See here for a topic on Women in history: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50838

See here for a topic on Female Singers: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=50851.

See here for a topic on Female Artists and the Nude: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50860

Post Reply