Sapphic Muses

My male readers – of which I have many – are going to love me for this post. Absolutely, positively LOVE me! I happily accept all forms of gratitude, with hugs and kisses most appreciated. Ah, but you guys love me already, right? Believe me, I love you too. Very, very much 😉

This is probably irrelevant, but I’ll mention anyway that I am straight. Yes, plain old straight. Boringly straight. Rigidly and exclusively straight. Wholly hetero. Me likey men!! Woohoo!! :sends a clumsy, awkward lapdance out to male readers through blogosphere:

But straight as I am, I’m still uninhibited enough to feel completely comfortable posing nude with other female models. I’ve done it a few times and have gotten pretty touchy-feely in the process. All in the name of art, yes? I don’t have to reiterate the nearly universal opinion that the female form is considered the epitome of beauty (except by Michelangelo, but we covered that). And if one female form is beautiful, then why not two? And then why not two embracing, kissing, and caressing passionately? Sounds like the makings of a memorable, sensual, and erotic work of art. The best kind I say.

Lesbian subjects have a long, distinguished presence in art, having inspired many artists over the centuries. I found a few notable ones to share, and it’s interesting to see the different moods and varying expressive styles, determined of course by the individual sensibilities of the male artists. I personally don’t find any of these to be exploitative, but then again I don’t know the inner motivations of the artists. They were men, after all. And the subject is titillating. But I’m willing to give everyone the benefit of the doubt, and assume that the sensuality is the inspiring element here. Unleashed, unselfconscious, liberated. And very beautiful.

One of Rodin’s famous Eros sketches, this is Temple of Love:

Toulouse-Lautrec spent an inordinate amount of time in the brothels of Paris. He was well-acquainted with the ladies there and observed a lot of intimate activity. He produced several lesbian works, and this one is discreetly titled Two Friends:

In both style and subject matter, Egon Schiele was as explicit as they come with regard to sexuality. This is Two Women Embracing:

Although I am not a fan of Gustav Courbet, I would be terribly remiss by not including him in this post. I saw this painting, The Sleepers, at the big Courbet exhibit at the Met last spring. I’d say there’s a little more than sleeping going on 😉

9 thoughts on “Sapphic Muses

  1. lkwinter says:

    I am appalled that you could think a man would want to see such a thing!

    Thanks for the cyber dance, which is about as close as I’ll ever come to getting one. Heck, I’m almost forty, and I’ve never even been inside a strip club–I’m hetero too, so, I don’t know; maybe I’m just wierd. Preserving my lily white conscience I suppose…

    Museworthy would be a great addition to my blogroll, with your permission of course?

  2. I remember being very shocked some 30 years ago seeing two women kissing in a London street (evening outside a restaurant). I am very tolerant now about all such things and it is true I find this less of a problem that if it were men in the paintings.

    Now if I was asked to do two men in an erotic sculpture then the price would have to be right, and it would have to be very right (!) but then one would wonder just how much of the special artistic ingredient would manifest itself! This is where Michelangelo would do well!

    It is amazing that these paintings weren’t burnt, thank goodness. I wonder if we will ever see Turner’s erotic drawings the ones that Ruskin hid.

    You are very good at stiring Museworthy, these ‘tricky’ posts- one has to choose words carefully and I have had to change several of them!

    Ikwinter, are we allowed to know where your blog is?

  3. artmodel says:

    Ikwinter,

    Never having been to a strip club is nothing to feel embarassed about. I actually think it’s nice!! You’re not a prude, and you’re not “weird”. You’re just a man who thinks they are places where women are degraded and exploited, which they are. I think my “cyber-dance” is much, much better 😉 And I don’t even expect tips!

    Yes, by all means blogroll me. Thank you, I’d be honored. But Robert asks a good question in his comment. What is your blog? We can’t click to it through your name. So if you could provide it for us, that would be great. We can’t find you.

    Thanks for commenting!

    Claudia

  4. artmodel says:

    Robert,

    I hadn’t even heard of Turner’s erotic drawings. I wonder if they exist anywhere online. Leave it to Ruskin to lock them away! What a killjoy 😦

    So even if the “price was right”, do you think you’d still be able to create that hypothetical erotic sculpture of the two men?? Like we always discuss, artists work from subjects that they relate to or inspire them. Commissioned assignments are one thing. But depicting a sexual behavior that is foreign and/or unappealing to the artist might be where the line is drawn. I don’t know. But our dear Michelangelo sure teaches us a lot about the strong influence an artist’s sexual proclivities have on his work. In fact, he demonstrates it loud and clear!

    Great to hear from you as always, Robert.

    Claudia

  5. Yes I think I would find it very difficult to do it justice, I think I would have to cheat (myself)!

    Ref Turner’s little secret see here;

    http://arthistory.about.com/b/2005/01/01/turners-erotic-drawings-survive.htm

    So they are presumably in the Tate archives, like 90% of public collections not on show!

  6. lkwinter says:

    I’m sorry friend; I always think others will type lkwinter and bingo.

    http://lkwinter.wordpress.com/

    I don’t update quite as much as you…oh, and read only if you can tolerate the ramblings of a psychoneurotic and insecure male attempting to navigate the school systems of Northern California among a mass of kids half my age. : )

    Hoping you don’t mind the compliment, but this blog of your’s is exceptional: great taste, refined and dignified with zeal and flavor for life, and to top off these but few mentions of admirable qualities, you actually possess incredible talent for writing as well…you could write a book, really…

    Thanks for letting me add you, I’m honored.

    Scott, but everyone calls me LK for reasons would take to long to divulge..
    : )

  7. artmodel says:

    Robert, thanks for the links! Who knew Turner was such a horny little devil 😉

  8. artmodel says:

    Ikwinter,

    Thanks for the link to your blog. Much appreciated! And yes, I can more than tolerate the ramblings of a “pyschoneurotic and insecure male”. In fact, I’ve been doing it all my life. I live in New York, remember? 😆

    Thanks also for your incredibly generous words about my blog. You are so so sweet. Such nice, complimentary things to hear, Scott, and I’m very grateful. Wow, I feel so good! You’re awesome.

    I look forward to hearing from you again, and seeing your name on my Comments pages.

    Claudia

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