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

Monday, January 27, 2014

Harem Venus Scheherazade by Sir Arthur Streeton

Scheherazade (1897)

Here is a spare but splendid interpretation of Scheherazade by Australian impressionist painter Sir Arthur Streeton (1867-1943). Streeton's parents were English and they met on the ship taking them to live in Australia, where Stretton was born in Geelong in 1867.

Streeton studied at the National Gallery Art School in Melbourne.  He travelled to London in 1897 but couldn't replicate the success he had achieved in Australia.  He served as an official war artist in France in 1918 but, unlike his contemporaries, his war pictures are strangely empty of people; focussing instead on the landscape of battlefields.  It is as a landscape painter that he is best known and today his paintings of Australian scenery fetch millions of dollars.  He was knighted in 1937.

His striking painting of Scheherazade is free of all the usual orientalist fripperies and is all the more effective as a result.

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