Monday, January 9, 2017

Leda and the Swan by Giovanni Boldini

I have just done a post about Italian artist Giovanni Boldini over on Venus Observations.  Here is his version of Leda and the Swan.

The Greek legend of Leda and the Swan, has the God Zeus, in the form of a swan seducing or raping, depending on the version, Leda, the daughter of the King of Aetolia.  Obviously not too traumatised by the event that night she also had sex with her husband and in due course gave birth to two eggs which produced Helen (of Troy),  Clytemnestra, and Castor and Pollux.

The subject has enabled artists for centuries to produce images of ecstatic looking women in copulatory poses while claiming that they are just illustrating an acceptable classical subject.  Boldini's version is certainly at the more explicit end of the scale, with the swan between Leda's legs, its feet grasping her thighs as it presses its nether regions into her groin while she looks appropriately overcome.

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