Tag Archive | Nude

Modern Art Monday Presents: Hannah Wilke, Venus Pareve

Hannah Wilke Venus Pareve 
All Photos By Gail

Hannah Wilke (1940 – 1993) was a leading artist of the feminist art movement that began in the 1970s. Her primary subject was her own body, explored in sculptures, drawings, photographs, and performance as part of a larger investigation of femininity and sexuality.  Venus Pareve (1982 – 84) comprises twenty-five sculptural self-portraits, hand-modeled and then cast in plaster of Paris or edible kosher chocolate.

Hannah Wilke Venus Pareve 

Wilke often presents herself in the role Venus, the Roman goddess of Love, sex and fertility. These figures, like many celebrated classical sculptures of the goddess, lack arms and legs — their beauty is without agency; they are helpless objects of desire.

Hannah Wilke Venus Pareve 

The title, too, mimics the names of famous Greek and Roman states: Venus de Milo, Venus Pudica, Venus Genetrix. Pareve, however, is a Hebrew term from Jewish dietary law, signifying food that contains neither dairy nor meat and that therefore may be eaten without restriction. Venus Pareve critiques the perception of woman’s bodies as objects of consumption.

Hannah Wilke Venus Pareve 
The Painting on the wall in the background is Double Portrait (Gay Flag) by Ross Bleckner.

Photographed in The Jewish Museum in NYC.

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Pink Thing of The Day: Vintage Pink Mermaid Soap Dish

Pink Mermaid Soap Dish
Photo By Gail

This little gal was spotted in the vanity area of the bathroom in one of houses owned by my sister and her husband. As you can see, this fine soap dish is “too nice” to actually be used to hold the soap.

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Abandoned Gold Mannequin Torso

Gold Mannequin Torso
All Photos By Gail

On the way to the laundromat with a load of clothes, I passed by this spray-painted gold, female mannequin torso, which has been discarded curbside, atop an old wooden cabinet, and other assorted detritus, on East 14th Street in anticipation of the weekend garbage pick up.

Gold Mannequin Torso 1

I can’t say if the black magic marker designs on the nipples is part of the artwork, or just the evidence of neighborhood teenage boys acting like juvenile idiots.

Gold Mannequin Torso Back

She had additional “comments” scrawled in the same black marker on her backside. I can only assume they were rude in nature.

Gold Mannequin Torso Upshot

I hope an artist found her and took her home.

Limited Runs Presents the Marilyn Monroe Red Velvet Collection

Marilyn Monroe Red Velvet Series
Marilyn Monroe Red Velvet Series By Tom Kelley, 1949 (All Post Photos By Gail)

There would probably be little argument that Marilyn Monroe is the most legendary and iconic Hollywood Movie Star to have ever lived. Countless contemporary artists — from Andy Warhol to Ron English, Ad Infinitum — have captured and re-appropriated her likeness into their own works, and her image still turns heads wherever it appears. While she did not have a long life, she certainly has achieved immortality in a sense. Limited Runs, a company that specializes in Classic Hollywood and other Fine Art Photography has just released the Marilyn Monroe Red Velvet Collection, which  features her famous nude shots circa 1949 that originally appeared on promotional calendars. Now you can all own prints of these gorgeous photographs that were at one time so controversial, they had to be “dressed” in superimposed lingerie in order to be sent through the mail.

Marilyn Monroe Red Velvet Series Calendar

Above is an example one of these calendars, where Monroe’s breasts have been blocked out to avoid being labeled as pornography — pretty hilarious when you consider the types of fashion photography and figure modeling that has become acceptable, and even mainstream, in the past 70 or so years. One of the Red Velvet poses made her the first Playboy Sweetheart — the prototype for the centerfold-featured Playmates who would follow in years to come.

I had the chance to see this series in person at a reception held by the 360 Design Gallery in Tribeca, where they were on view for only two days as part of a 2015 Summer Tour, which traveled to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Chicago and finally New York.   It’s easy to forget how stunning and arguably perfect-looking Monroe  was a until you see photos like this and remember that she was really and truly an original.

Marilyn Monroe By Gene Lester

The series  is also features a number of candid shots of Monroe, such as these captured in 1954 by photographer Gene Lester while she was on a cigarette break during filming of one of her movies.

Marilyn Monroe By Gene Lester

Marilyn Monroe By Gene Lester

This one, which captures multiple reflections, is really fantastic.

Marilyn Monroe Birthday Cake 1960

Marilyn Monroe, Birthday Cake, 1960 (Photographer Unknown)

This one is also amazing.

Marilyn Monroe Jane Russell Howard Hawks

Here she is with co-star  Jane Russell and Director Howard Hawks during the filming of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes in 1953.

See the full collection and buy online at Limited Runs Dot Com.

From The Jean Paul Gaultier Exhibit: The Skin Deep and Metropolis Galleries

  Ruffle Gown
All Photos By Gail

The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk is a must-see event at the Brooklyn Museum, on exhibit through February 23rd, 2014. Presented in this fourth post from the show is our final set of photos, featuring one of a kind selections from the Skin Deep and Metropolis Galleries. Enjoy!

Flared Pants

Nude Dress

I’m not really sure who would wear this Nude Silhouette Dress, but it’s at least much less frightening than This Dress.

Skin Deep Red Light Gallery

The Skin Deep gallery is set up like Amsterdam’s Red Light District, where each outfit represents a different “prostitute,” if you will. It is here that you will see extremely avant-garde-bordering-on-festish designs that were very challenging to capture in photographs due to the low light/ no flash double whammy.

Flayed Cat Suit

Flayed Catsuit worn onstage by French Superstar Mylene Farmer.

Blood Vessel Cat Suit
Blood Vessel Bodysuit with Beaded Cap and Heart Handbag

Feather Boa and Corset

I am pretty sure this is a costume designed for a specific Popstar, but I neglected to note just who (guess: Lady Gaga).

Celluloid Dress

Celluloid Dress and Accessories made from Film Strips (Caution: Highly Flammable)!

Green Peapod Dress

I call this one the Green Peapod Dress!

From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk’s final gallery is called Metropolis and it definitely wraps up the exhibit on a note consistent with the high bar set by everything that came before it.

Native American Headdress Gown

Couture Gown with Native American-Inspired Headdress

Leopard Pelt Gown

Leopard Pelt-Accented Gown

Face Dress

La Mariee Dress from the Tribute to Africa Collection

Russian and Eskimo Ensembles

Metroplis Gallery

The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk is on Exhibit Through February 23rd, 2014 at the Brooklyn Museum, Located at 200 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn, New York 11238-6052 (Take the 2 or 3 Trains to Eastern Parkway/Brooklyn Museum). The Exhibit is in the Morris A. and Meyer Schapiro Wing and Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Gallery on the 5th Floor. Admission to the Exhibit is $15 and is separate from General Admission to the Museum. Students with ID and Corporate Members Pay $10. Members see Gaultier for free. On-site ticket sales end at 5:00 PM on Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, and 9:00 PM on Thursday. Hours are Wednesday: 11:00 AM – 6:00 PM, Thursday: 11:00 AM –10:00 PM, Friday – Sunday: 11:00 AM– 6:00 PM.