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Archive for the ‘Courtesan & Prostitute’ Category

Olympia unfavorably compared to Titian’s Venus

In Courtesan & Prostitute, Critics, Olympia's Degradation on May 11, 2010 at 8:43 pm

Amedee Cantaloube writes in Le Grand Journal, June 22nd, 1865:

“This Olympia is a sort of female gorilla, a grotesque in India rubber outlined in black, apes on a bed, in a state of complete nudity, the horizontal attitude of Titian’s Venus: the right arm rests on the body in the same fashion, except for the hand, which is flexed in a sort of shameless contraction.”

Titian, Venus of Urbino, Oil on Canvas, Uffizi, Florence, 1538.

VS.

Olympia, the Venus of Paris, 1863…

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Olympia called the Hottentot Venus & morgue-like again…

In Courtesan & Prostitute, Critics, Olympia's Degradation, The Black Cat on May 11, 2010 at 4:20 pm

Caricature of Saartjie Baartman, called the "Hottentot Venus"

Critic Geronte writes, May 21st, 1865:

That Hottentot Venus with a black cat, exposed completely naked on her bed like a corpse on the counters of the morgue, this Olympia from the rue Mouffetard [a notorious haunt of prostitution at the time], dead of yellow fever and already arrived at an advanced state of decomposition.

The Critic “Ego” speaks – I despise Olympia

In Courtesan & Prostitute, Critics, Olympia's Degradation on May 11, 2010 at 3:32 pm

Manet, Olympia, 1863.

In Le Monde Illustre, May 13th, 1865.

The “august jeune fille” is a courtesan, with dirty hands and wrinkled feet; she is lying down, wearing one Turkish slipper and a red cockade in her hair; her body has the livid tint of a cadaver displayed in the morgue; her outlines are drawn in charcoal and her greenish, bloodshot eyes appear to be provking the public, protected all the while by a hideous Negress.

All is drawn with coal all around and soft soap in the middle.

No, never has anything so… strange been hung on the walls of an art exhibition.

Olympia called an “ebony-worker”

In Caricatures, Courtesan & Prostitute, Critics, Olympia's Degradation, The Black Cat on May 11, 2010 at 2:25 pm

Cham, Le Salon, 1865.

In Le Salon, June 2nd, 1865 by Cham.

The Birth of the little Ebony-worker.  Monsieur Manet has taken the thing too literally: The song “How like a bouquet of flowers!”  The announcements are sent out by Mother Michel and her cat.

Olympia derided as sick prostitute with black familiars

In Courtesan & Prostitute, Olympia's Degradation, The Black Cat on May 11, 2010 at 6:00 am

In the journal La Fraternité Littéraire, 1865

What verse! What a picture! Olympia awakes, weary from … dreaming. She has had a bad night, that is evident. Insomnia and colic have disturbed her serenity; her color indicates as much. There are two “black messengers”: a cat which has been unfortunately flattened between two railway sleepers; a negress who has nothing about her that “recalls the amourous night” unless it be a bouquet bought at the florist’s on the corner, and paid for by Monsieur Arthur, which tells me a great deal about Olympia. Arthur is certainly in the antechamber waiting.

G. Randon satirizes Olympia’s suggested trade

In Caricatures, Courtesan & Prostitute on May 11, 2010 at 5:26 am

In Le Journal, June 29, 1865

Maid: Madame.

Olympia: What is it?

Maid: There’s a man that wants to see you on business.

Olympia: Show him in.

(Apparently, that’s the way things are done among certain “ladies.”)

Olympia unfavorably compared to Titian’s Venus

In Courtesan & Prostitute, Critics, Olympia's Degradation on April 15, 2010 at 10:42 pm

Amedee Cantaloube writes in Le Grand Journal, 1865:

“This Olympia is a sort of female gorilla, a grotesque in India rubber outlined in black, apes on a bed, in a state of complete nudity, the horizontal attitude of Titian’s Venus: the right arm rests on the body in the same fashion, except for the hand, which is flexed in a sort of shameless contraction.”

Titian, Venus of Urbino, Oil on Canvas, Uffizi, Florence, 1538.

VS.

Olympia, the Venus of Paris, 1863…