February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day everybody!

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

Hope everybody is enjoying Valentine's Day...   Hope you got chocolates.   Hope you got kissed.

A little secret here -- if I ask Kitty; "Where's my kiss", she will lick my nose.

But seriously, folks, when I need to appreciate the beauty of the opposite sex I am apt to head off for the Legion of Honor for the proper dose of beautiful women.   Hanging on a wall or frozen in a chunk of marble they are pretty easy to get along with.   They don't frighten me one bit!

This sculpture (above) is "The Kiss", ca. 1886, by Aguste Rodin, French, 1840-1917.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

These incredibly beautiful eyes definitely slay me!
They illuminate my dark heart and warm my cold soul...

"Hyacinthe Gabrielle Roland, later Marchioness Wellesley", ca1791", by Elisabeth Louise Vigee Le Brun, French, 1755-1842.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

This young lady is just a bit young for me to be falling in love with, but I guess no harm will be done.

This is a fragment of "The Broken Pitcher" ca. 1891, by William Adolphe Bouguereau. Accompanying the title was this information;

Well known as a defender of conservative, academic values in 19th-century art, Bouguereau rose to prominence in the 1850's.   An infuential teacher in the Ecole des Beaux-Arts, his work displays the idealism and decorative quality typical of the paitings shown at the official Salon.   Influenced by Italian Renaissance masters during his stay in Italy, he became a superb draftsman who produced works with a smooth and refined surface finish that contrasts sharply with the naturalism of his Barbizon and Impressionist comtemporaries.

Peasant imagery, particularly young and pretty peasant girls obsessed 19th-century artists.   However, The Broken Pitcher is based on a famous 18th-century composition of the same title by Jean-Baptiste Greuze.   The sexual symbolism of the broken pitcher is made more explicit by the girl's plaintive expression.   Bouguereau's sentimentality sofens the harsh realities of peasant life, portrayed more brutally and honestly by Gustave Courbert and Jean-Francois Millet.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

"Portrait of a Lady" ca. 1591, by Frans Pourbus the Younger, Flemish, 1569-1622.

And if not to fall in love with her for her beauty, I'm sure she would be a durable companion -- and I'm certain my apartment would be MUCH cleaner with her around.

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