Monday, December 22, 2014

More "incest" shock for the UK press.

Oh dear, more "incest" nonsense in the press yesterday over this picture of Chelsea Footballer Oscar dos Santos Emboaba Júnior (not surprisingly, just known as Oscar) who lives not far from Agent Triple P. The problem with this picture of the Brazilian star is that he is not only being kissed by his wife Ludmila (right) at the gym but also his sister and has his hand on both of their bottoms (according to the journalists or "back" according to everyone else).  Shock!  How can he touch his sister in such a way?  The press and other uptight internet commentators had a fit.  For heaven's sake!  He is South American!  They are much more touchy-feely than us repressed Brits and all the more better for it! 

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Chloe's Candle: Illustration by Brad Holland

We have featured the illustrations of American artist Brad Holland before here and here.  Today we have another of his sensuously erotic illustrations from the May 1980 issue of Playboy.  As ever, it's the (literal) little touches like the man's wandering fingers that make it so effective.

Anne Churchill, Countess of Sunderland by Sir Godfrey Kneller (1646-1723)

This illustration, from Playboy's Ribald Rhymes feature of traditional erotic stories, is from a poem from 1701 written by a member of the Kit-Kat Club in London.  A gentleman's club with strong political and literary associations.  The name probably came from the owner, Christopher (Kit) Catt, of the tavern in Shire Lane where the club first met.  Support for the politics of the Whig party (which eventually largely merged with the Liberals) was not the only thing that concerned them.  They also had a tradition of offering toasts at their dinners to famous beauties of the day, such as the four daughters of John Churchill, the First Duke of Marlborough: Lady Godolphin, Lady Sunderland, Lady Bridgewater, and Lady Monthermer.  Many of these women had been painted by Kit-Kat Club member Sir Godfrey Kneller, who also produced a series of portraits of the members.

Other members of the club included writers such as Sir Richard Steele, Matthew Prior, William Congreve, Sir John Vanbrugh (who as an architect designed the Duke of Marlborough's home, Blenheim Palace) and Joseph Addison. It is quite possible that one of these penned the poem Chloe's Candle.

The poem tells of a shepherd, Strephon, who discovers a large candle on his girlfriend, Chloe's, nightstand and picks it up to have a look at it.

But when more near this utensil he viewed,
Which as he held it like a truncheon shewed,
He soon discovered the fair wanton's crime,
For on its sides there hung a lucid slime,
Brown curling hair, which in the furious joy,
The Melting tallow plucked unfelt away,

Upset that Chloe was using the candle as a dildo he confronts her when she returns to her room and points out that the inanimate candle cannot possibly give the love, ardor and satisfaction that he can.

With that he seized her, panting, in his arms,
Greedy of tasting the forbidden charms,
Swift through the curling brake, his pintle drove,
To seek among dark shade the springs of love,
With ease he pierced the sacred gloomy shade,
Through the same passage which the candle made,

Chloe excited by being ravished by her lover

With arms and legs embraced the amorous swain,
Cried, Oh my dear!" then spent and died again.

Thus she feels ecstasies unknown before, 
Resolved to use the tallow tool no more,
And finding from a prick such true delight,
Leaves the dull taper to supply the night,
Thus he fucks on with many a vigorous thrust,
Blest by the nymph, though by the candle curst.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Blonde Electra sisters kiss on X-Factor. Puritans horrified!

Agent Triple P caught some of the X Factor final last night, in particular the part where the contestants who had been knocked out of the live stages came back to sing together for the one more time (as if the world actually wanted that).  At one point during the number the members of Blonde Electra, who were knocked out in the first week, locked lips for a kiss.  That'll cause a scandal, we thought, as it shows that they are all miming!

Indeed, today the press is full of outrage over the kiss but not because of the miming or even because they were both women (we remember the scandal when Russian lipstick "lesbian" group Tatu had their kiss on stage during Top of the Pops edited out a few years ago).  No, the cause of all the consternation is that Jazzy and Ruby King are sisters.  Ooh, er, missus, incest, howled the tabloids and online sites.

Now, we find all this ridiculous.  What we have here are two not very talented, not very attractive young women who are desperate to be famous.  Having blown their big chance because the viewing public found them really annoying (they have a British father but their upbringing and accents are American) they get one more chance to get in front of the cameras.  How do we stand out given the other dozens of singers on stage at the same time, they think?  They could have stripped off, of course, but it was a lot easier to have a little snog. Now, perhaps, Hugh Hefner might give them a call to pose for Playboy, although they don't actually really have the faces or the figures.  

So, a publicity stunt, yes, but incestuous? Now the subject of incest is a thorny one, of course.  In nearly all societies it is illegal and there are very few exceptions and these are usually related to rulers breeding with family members to keep a particular family in power, as in Ancient Egypt.  There is no suggestion that this was common among normal citizens at the time. The Azande people of Africa had a tradition where brother/sister incest was reported and the Thonga, it is said, had similar habits but these are very rare examples.  The reasons for the ban on incest is not just the very real risk of inbreeding but also about the use of inappropriate power to coerce, as in parent child relationships (which is why biological incest has been extended to people like step-parents in many countries).  In the United States the test is of consanguinity which measures the degree of blood relationship of two people.  Americans are often surprised to discover that sex and marriage between two first cousins, which is illegal in the US, is perfectly legal in the UK.  Indeed, Agent Triple P has a married aunt and uncle who are first cousins.  This indicates an element of social construct as regards the rules, therefore.

What is less clear is the definition of incest between same sex partners. Some countries explicitly do not define same sex relationships between family members as incest (Hong Kong).  In the UK the definition is about forbidding sexual intercourse, which has to be penetrative.  So, by that definition two brothers could be guilty of incest but two sisters couldn't be as they are not equipped with penises.  

So we find our fame hungry sisters not guilty of incest, apart from the fact that all they did was kiss, which is quite legal between any combination of people.  If they had got down on stage and started fingering each other then the uproar would have been justified.  It is really just another example of the new puritanism being fanned by the press as they look for things to be offended by?

Interestingly, Triple P does have some experience of sisters behaving rather more intimately than is usual.  When he was fifteen he went to a November 5th party (where British people set off fireworks and burn effigies of Catholics) and two very attractive sisters, aged fifteen and seventeen also attended. Triple P instantly hit it off with the fifteen year old and after too much homemade wine (lethal stuff) ended up dancing (badly) with said young lady,  We then retired to a dark part of our host's garden (it had a small wood  at the bottom) and indulged in our very first attempt at a snog.  We really had no idea what we were doing.  However, the older sister found us and, having been watching us, told her sister that we were both doing it all wrong.  She them demonstrated French kissing on her sister complete with bottom and neck caressing.  This we found hugely arousing, of course, but we were much more excited over the fact that they were women kissing each other than sisters kissing each other which, at the time, we didn't really think about, oddly.

One of our girlfriends has related how she learned, as a thirteen year old, to masturbate following a demonstration by her fifteen year old sister.  She said that they quite often masturbated together and, once or twice attempted to mutually engage in the activity.  This continued for a year until the older girl got her first boyfriend.  She has never been entirely clear about how far this activity went but they were certainly sexually close to a certain extent.  Both are now perfectly well adjusted women in their forties but their slightly more friendly than expected kisses (which we have observed) when greeting each other still generates a certain frisson.

So calm down Britain, one kiss between sisters looking for publicity (job done , girls) does not spell a society destroying outbreak of incest!

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Idylle d'été by Auguste Levêque

Idylle d'été (1918)

We have decided to stop our eighteenth century theme as it has been running now since August. So it is back to our usual eclectic selection for the next few months.  As an appropriate restful pause after our themed posts we have this superbly post-coital painting by Auguste Levêque.   The couple, totally comfortable in each other's nakedness, recline in an area of hay which has obviously been flattened by their previous passionate activity, and gaze at each other raptly.

Auguste Levêque (1866-1921) was a Belgian painter as well as a sculptor and poet.  He studied at the Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts which was founded in 1711.  Although a realist he was also influenced by the symbolist movement but many of his paintings were based on mythological subjects such as Circe and Diana.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Illustrations for Le Rideau levé ou l'Éducation de Laure by Jean-Adrien Mercier (1899-1995).

Here we have some illustrations by Jean-Adrien Mercier to Mirabeau's Le Rideau levé ou l'Éducation de Laure.  Mercier was an established and well known illustrator rather than a specialist in purely erotic fare.  This is one of four erotic books he provided the illustrations for.

Mirabeau's 1786 novel tells the story of Laure, who is educated sexually by her father.  Female protagonists were popular in French erotic novels of the time.  The process of her education is accelerated by her spying on her father and his mistress having sex on the other side of the curtain mentioned in the title; although it is a symbolic curtain as well.  Laure's libertine but structured sexual education is contrasted with her more outrageous cousins whose headlong plunge into depravity is offered as a salutary, and ultimately tragic, lesson.

Mercier was born in 1899 in the city of Angers in the Loire Valley.  He attended the l' École régionale des beaux-arts d'Angers and then l' École nationale supérieure des arts décoratifs in Paris.  After he left art school in 1923 he started his career by producing some book illustrations, working on woodblock prints which gave him a useful technical grounding for what would become his speciality, posters.

L'Homme a l'Hispano (1933)

The following year he won a competition to produce a poster for the Angers Trade fair and after that his new direction was set as he produced hundreds of posters including 150 for films; producing posters for top French directors like Jean Renoir and Abel Gance.

Cointreau advertisement 1937

Mercier's mother was the granddaughter of the founder of the Cointreau drinks company and the daughter of one of the Cointreau brothers who invented the orange flavoured liqueur itself in 1875.  Mercier produced many posters for the company until 1965.

In the late thirties and early forties he started producing illustrations for children's books.  He left Paris in 1940 and moved to Dinard on the coast. He stopped producing posters almost entirely. In 1961 he was asked to produce the decorations for the children's play area of the ocean liner SS France.  In the forties and fifties he worked on illustrations for a number of religious books.  He did his final book illustrations in 1993, two years before his death at the age of 97.

These illustrations were done for a limited edition of Mirabeau's novel produced in 1933.  Three hundred and fifty of the four hundred copies of the edition were seized by police and destroyed.