Erotic depictions of women in drawing, painting, sculpture and photography from the dawn of man to the present.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Non-centrefold Venus of the Month 27: Daphne, November 1977

During the coming year I am going to try to post rather more centrefolds and non-centrefold pictorials from men's magazines than I have done in the recent past.  I have got rather behind with these, so need to start filling the gaps in my list in the right sidebar of the blog.  These do, however, take a long time to format, especially if there are a lot of pictures, as the major magazines like Penthouse featured.

Some of the other magazines, however, went for fewer pictures in number but larger images.  Chic was certainly like this in its early years and that style carried back to stablemate Hustler, as well, from 1976.  So here, from November 1977, we have Daphne. in a pictorial that consists of just six photographs. 

Daphne is photographed by James Baes in characteristic style, using mirrored surfaces to project patches of light.  Although Daphne is posed on an ornate bed we suspect the pictures were taken outside in bright sunlight, rather than indoors.

Baes uses the uprights of the golden bedstead to frame her assertively spread pussy in many of the shots.  1977 had seen the increase of shots of the girls touching their pussies and, in particular, spreading their (increasingly) pink and moist looking labia; something which Daphne certainly goes in for in her pictorial.

It is particularly nice to have a couple of photographs of Daphne smiling in this set.  It's also nice to have her mostly barefoot.  Far too many men's magazines pictorials have their girls in bed wearing shoes, something I can't understand at all!

This is the only shot of Daphne not on the bed but on the floor instead.  Curiously, she has one leg through her knickers in this and a couple of the other shots here.

The final double page spread of Daphne has her spreading her pink labia and looking ecstatic.   Of all the ladies I have observed playing with their bits none of them have ever done this!  Disappointingly, she is wearing shoes in bed but she compensates for this with the nice white stockings.

Fortunately, we have a number of outtakes from the pictorial which add to the six published in the magazine.  The first one is the full version of the cropped image of Daphne on the floorboards in the bright sun.   In the second one she has removed one shoe.  I'm very happy to see girls in sexy shoes on the floor, just not in bed!

Now she is in bed, still wearing one shoe, like Jason from the Greek legend of the Argonauts.  Oddly, she seems to have picked it up from where she discarded it on the floor to be next to her in bed.  Perhaps, like my friend S she really, really likes playing with new shoes!

Daphne is penetrating herself with her finger here in a pose the magazines tended to avoid as it was likely to attract the expensive necessity, in some states (and Canada), of printing black dots over the offending probing digit.  It wouldn't have been allowed in Britain at the time either.  Lots of furniture included in the background here, to add glamour to the set.

Baes has framed Daphne's pussy in a feature of the furniture again here.  One of his reflected highlight effects adding to the isolation of her vulva and anus in this shot of her posed on a chair. 

Here is Daphne framed by the gold bedstead with the photo immediately above being almost (but not quite) identical to the one which appeared in the magazine.  We can see that the furniture is being moved around to suit each shot rather than being a record of an actual room.  All is artifice.  Daphne's face looks quite hot and sweaty in some of these pictures, as though the location is really warm. 

The final two shots are pretty unprecedented for pictures taken during a shoot for a mainstream men's magazine in the seventies, with Daphne unequivocally penetrating her own anus with her finger.  It would be several decades before we got a shot like this in a published newsstand available magazine and even then it would be very rare.

So while, in some ways, a typical James Baes effort for Hustler this one benefits from its limited palette of white, gold and flesh, a nicely hot (in every way) model and some surprising self penetration.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

The Lust World Chapter 10: "Now you have completely ruined my plan by choosing to accompany him!"

You can read the next episode of my erotic adventure story The Lust World here.  Chapter background notes on it are here.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Swirling Venuses by Giovanni Boldini

We posted a sensual picture of a couple by, largely forgotten but for a time hugely fashionable, Italian painter Giovanni Boldini over on the Seduction of Venus last summer.  Today we are going to look at some of his lovely nudes.

Boldini was born in Ferrara in 1842 and was trained in the traditional Renaissance style by his father, also an artist.  He showed great talent at an early age and was soon studying with other artists as well, before moving to Florence and studying at the Scuola del Nudo, part of the Accademia di Belle arti di Firenze, although he didn't attend classes regularly.

Nudo di donna seduta (C. 1882)

While in Florence he got to know group of artists known as the Macchiaioli, the Italian equivalent of the French impressionists, who were rejecting the traditional teaching of Italian art schools and were starting to do many of their paintings outdoors.  To them, the key elements of a painting were the areas of light and shade or macchie and although Boldini wasn't a formal follower of the movement their influence can be see in the bold contrasts in his paintings.

Boldini quickly built a reputation for his portraits which were a lucrative genre for him.  He kept studying and travelled to Germany, France, Holland and England, where he did a number of portraits of aristocratic ladies such as the Duchess of Westminster, while undertaking commission work.

Reclining nude on a day bed (1900)

In 1872 he moved to Paris, where he lived until his death.  He became a friend of Edgar Degas and painted his portrait, as well as those of other painters of the time such as Whistler, Toulouse-Lautrec and Sargent.

His fame was cemented when he was commissioned to do a portrait of composer Giuseppe Verdi.  This introduced him to the world of opera which resulted in more commissions of singers and actresses, including Sarah Bernhardt.

Lina Cavalieri by Boldini (1901)

Pierro Fornasetti (1913-1988) with his Lina plates

One singer he painted several times was the sultry soprano Lina Cavalieri (1874-1944), known at the time as "the most beautiful woman in the world" and the subject of hundreds of photographs.  You may recognise her image from a series of artworks done by Italian artist Piero Fornasetti who became obsessed with her in the fifties and I have seen reproductions of the plates he did of her in many a trendy hotel.

Cavalieri was a fashion icon and was at the forefront of the really tightly laced corset look at the beginning of the twentieth century.  She was also famous for her lovers and this provocative drawing by Boldini is supposed to be her, so their relationship may have been rather more than that of artist and model.

Portrait of Giovinetta Errazuriz (1892)

Boldini sometimes painted the children of his clients and this portrait of ten year old Giovinetta Errazuriz, the daughter of a prominent Chilean in Exile in Paris,  has the young lady looking grown up and assertive.  Boldini has her in a young child's bonnet and an adult woman's cape.  To the consternation of the  attendees of the Venice Biennale in 1897 she is showing a slice of thigh above her stocking. This caused a major scandal but was probably just Boldini indicating that she was an innocent who was, nevertheless, becoming a woman.  The elongated treatment of limbs and body is typical of Boldini's flowing style to the extent that he was known as the "king of swish".

Most of Boldini's paintings were in oils but here is a lively and provocative watercolour, demonstrating his rapid, loose brushwork very well.

Although Boldini had always painted nudes, towards the end of his life, when he no longer needed the money from constant portraits to sustain him, he returned to the subject almost exclusively.

His figures now, unusually, often depicted pubic hair but many of these pictures were painted for his own enjoyment rather than to be exhibited.

The inclusion of models wearing stockings also took them out of the purely academic arena and into something more enticing.

His drawing style became looser and looser but he is still paying attention to the macchie in his pictures.

His paintings, too, in the twenties got more and more impressionistic with the backgrounds becoming just patches of colour enthusiastically applied.

Eventually even the colour started to disappear as Boldini's eyesight began to deteriorate.  The paintings are becoming more and more exercises in light and shade.

 Young lady entering the bath

In the bath

These two bathing girls show that he had not lost his ability to render lovely female forms but show that their surroundings are only vaguely depicted.  Without knowing that both paintings have 'bath' in the title it would be difficult to work out what was going on.

Boldini didn't date his canvasses so it is difficult, except in a few cases to date them accurately.

Certainly, these canvases are from the last few years of his life, with the girl in black stockings dating to 1930.  A lifelong bachelor he got married in 1929 at the age of 86.  He died of pneumonia in July 1931 at the age of 88

Marthe de Florian

Forgotten for decades, he was back in the news in 2010.   One of his lovers was an actress called Marthe de Florian (1864-1939).  A lady of a certain reputation, she was also the lover of two presidents and two prime ministers of France, including Georges Clemenceau. She had an apartment in Paris and it was inherited by her granddaughter who fled the city in 1940 when the Germans invaded.  She never returned to the apartment and on her death, at the age of 91, in 2010 the apartment was opened for the first time in seventy years to reveal a time capsule of early twentieth century France and this portrait of Marthe de Florian by Boldini, together with a love letter from him to Marthe.  The portrait is typical of Boldini's flowing, sensual style and when it was sold at auction realised a record price for the artist of £1.78 million.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Centrefold Venus of the Month 91: Cynthia Suckhold, December 1977

Well, this last week's hirsute Centrefold of the Week, Cynthia Suckhold,  (above) has attracted some comment, unusually, both positive and negative.   One thing is for certain is that her uncompromising centrefold has attracted a lot of views in that time; more views in seven days than the previous centrefold had in seventeen and more views than three of the ladies we posted in October and November.  One of the things we intended to do was post the most popular Centrefold of the Week pictorial of 2017 (if we have it) averaged by views related to days on the site in its entirety. Cynthia would have easily led this ranking, although she is disqualified because many of the views have been in January (she probably still would have won, though).  

Anyway, one reader requested the rest of her pictorial (no doubt just to see what her face was like) so here it is. She appeared in the December 1977 of Cheri.  The brainchild of Peter Wolff, who used to run Gallery and then High Society before setting up Cheri in 1976.  Subtitled the All True National Sex Magazine, it took him even more downmarket than High Society and both magazines were shameless ripoffs of Hustler, anyway. The first issue of Cheri, in August 1976, featured women penetrating themselves with their fingers, almost uniquely at the time, outside of under the counter publications and one pictorial at the time had women photographed with fake semen all over their faces.  Classy it was not.

Wolff was fascinated with real people's sex lives and felt that both Playboy and Penthouse were stuffed full of lifestyle articles which were just pretentious excuses to show naked women.  What he wanted to show, and what he thought most men really wanted, was what Cynthia is showing here; which is as much pink pussy as possible,  Perhaps Cynthia's centrefold is more honest than those which decorated the women with lingerie, lighting and expensive sets.  It is a modern l'origine du monde, perhaps. All are presenting women as objects but this one pares that objectification down to its essence for pictures designed to enhance masturbation. .

Cheri didn't have the budget of the other magazines wither and this was obvious from the poor print quality and colour reproduction (we had to do a lot of colour correction on these images).  In fact it still looked like Hustler had in 1974.  It's circulation eventually passed one million and it managed to survive in a print edition longer than Penthouse, though, eventually stopping print publication late last year, after more than four decades.

They make an attempt at a glamorous Penthouse 1973-style set here, complete with antique sofa but its hard to look sophisticated and glamorous when you are trying to spread your legs as much as possible.  Cynthia is actually a nice looking young lady but even her stockings look cheap; partly to disguise very skinny legs.

At least Cynthia had both legs.  In February 1977's issue Cheri presented a lady named Long Jeanne Silver as their centrefold. She had had her foot and much of her lower leg removed as a child leaving her with a flesh covered bone which she employed in the porn industry in the way that you might imagine. No barrel bottom went unscraped at Cheri.

Speaking of bottoms it is mainly that feature that interested Cynthia''s  unnamed photographer.  More than half of the pictorial''s shots feature her rear aspect and, indeed, she is lucky if she gets her face in most of them.  The photographer is obviously a bottom man not a breast man, as as there is just the one glimpse of one breast on show.

Not a lot of subtlety here, either, as a random prop is inserted into the picture to create insertion fantasies.

Younger readers will, no doubt, be appalled by the forest on display in these pictures but that was what women were like in the seventies (and before, of course).  This may be the source of the differing opinions as to the appeal of Cynthia and Meghan Leopard in our last post.   For Triple P, however, this is what makes them real women, rather than a depilated, fantasy objects.

We are grateful to the reader who gave us one of her other names, Barbara Howe, under which name she appeared in  Mayfair.  She appeared in a number of other British magazines as well, so may have been British.