Incorruptible Teeth, or, the French Smile Revolution
In 1787, Madame Vigée-Lebrun, painter to France’s royal and aristocratic elite, displayed a canvas at the Paris Salon. It was a self-portrait depicting the artist in an affectionate embrace with her daughter. Vigée-Lebrun is smiling—a sweet, broad smile revealing white teeth. There is little about this pose that seems in any way exceptional, yet exception was furiously taken. “An affectation which artists, art-lovers and persons of taste have been united in condemning,” wrote an anonymous commentator, “and which finds no precedent amongst the Ancients, is that in smiling she shows her teeth. This affectation is particularly out of place in a mother.”How the smile came to Paris (briefly), aka Grin City. [more inside]
In the new game Avant-Garde, you play an up-and-coming artist in 19th century Paris, a contemporary of Manet and Bouguereau. Carve and sell allegorical statue groups! Get snubbed by Napoleon III! Subsidize Gustave Courbet's drinking! Compose and promulgate your own aesthetic manifesto!
(some links may be NSFW) Dr. Sketchy's Anti-Art School Paris branch recently took to the Centre Pompidou for a session of drawing and modernist art. Models were inspired by several paintings in the gallery, such as Otto Dix's Portrait de la journaliste Sylvia Von Harden (1926), Fernand Léger'sComposition with Two Parrots (1939), Man Ray's Ingre's Violin (1924), Robert Delaunay, Erté, and Pablo Picasso. Here are photos of the session as well as some of the sketches.
HEIST: Paintings by Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, Henri Matisse, Amedeo Modigliani and Fernand Léger, worth ~$100 million, stolen! (Washington Post link) [more inside]
Photographs of the dancers, actresses, cafe-life figures and prostitutes who were the subjects of Toulouse Lautrec's paintings, including such luminaries as Sarah Bernhardt, "La Goulue" (Louise Weber; remember this?), and Jane Avril, who was the model for this last, iconic, Lautrec poster. View pages of the art matched up with photos, here, here, and here, and go to this page to rummage around in even more collections that include photos of Lautrec, his friends and family, street and location scenes, and lots of other tidbits. [Spanish language site; NUDITY]