Romanian Woman in a Red Dress (20th Century) by Felix Vallotton (1865-1925) and Paris, Centre Pompidou - Musée national d'art moderneOriginal Source: Paris, Centre Pompidou - Musée national d'art moderne - Centre de création industrielle
A strap falls down,
Etude de femme d'après nature (A Study of a Woman from Nature), also known as "Portrait of Madame Soustra" (19th Century) by Marie-Denise Villers, born Lemoine (1774-1821), Paris, musée du LouvreOriginal Source: Agence photo de la Réunion des musées nationaux-Grand Palais
an eye watches our every move…
a shoe is unlaced,
Made in Japan-La Grande Odalisque (20th Century) by Martial Raysse, born in 1936, Paris, Centre Pompidou - Musée national d'art moderne, © Adagp, Paris, 2018Original Source: Agence photo de la Réunion des musées nationaux-Grand Palais
an eye watches our every move…
La Femme blonde (20th Century) by Albert Marquet (1875-1947), Paris, Centre Pompidou - Musée national d'art moderne - Centre de création industrielleOriginal Source: aris, Centre Pompidou - Musée national d'art moderne - Centre de création industrielle
Paintings often combine seductive colors with subjects being seduced in a way that awakens our senses and desire.
Mythological Couple (Daphnis and Chloe ?) (16th Century) by Paris Bordone (1500-1571), Louvre museumOriginal Source: Paris, Louvre museum
A sensual vein particularly influenced by ancient culture began to develop in the 15th century.
Famous lovers from mythology made a wonderful pretext for Renaissance paintings imbued with barely restrained eroticism. The characters' eyes reveal everything, such as with this couple painted by Paris Bordone where the man fixes his feverish gaze on the breast of his companion.
Young Woman Going to Bed (17th Century) by Jacob Van Loo (1614-1670), Lyon, musée des Beaux-ArtsOriginal Source: Lyon, musée des Beaux-Arts
In the 17th century (especially in Flemish painting) lustfulness became more explicit, as with this young woman who we see from behind, seeking our attention one final time before going to bed.
Olympia (19th Century) by Edouard Manet (1832-1883) and Paris, musée d'OrsayOriginal Source: Paris, musée d'Orsay
Since the Venus of the Renaissance, the naked form has enjoyed a boom like no other. Yet in the 19th century the naked body took on the appearance of a woman of easy virtue, becoming a little too real and a little too tangible, with scandal erupting as a result.
We would like to thank:
- For design, illustrations, writing, and coordination of the RMN-Grand Palais project: Cécile Maisonneuve (Doctor of Art History, Policy Officer, Scientific Council), Nathalie Gathelier (National Museums Speaker), Annie Madec (Iconographer), Françoise Lombardi-Peissel (Project Manager) at RMN-Grand Palais.
- For reproductions: French museum collections represented by the Photo Agency of the Réunion des musées nationaux-Grand Palais:
Montpellier, Musée Fabre; Versailles, Musée Lambinet; Lille, Palais des Beaux-Arts; Paris, The Louvre; Paris, Centre Pompidou (Musée National d'Art Moderne - Centre de Création Industrielle).