First, I’d like to thank all of you who left comments for me about the direction of this column. For now, I’ve decided to continue jumping around and letting it be a daily surprise. I don’t have a classical education and often feel inhibited about commenting on the art that I choose, but I’m going to try and be more open about what appeals to me. To that end, I’d like to thank Tethys and Flex for the information about Kay Neilsen from yesterday’s post. Neilsen is one of my favourite artists of the Art Nouveau period. I find his work sensual and suggestive. I will also be following up with artist Margaret Macdonald Mackintosh, whose work was a delight to discover. Thanks, Tethys.
Today we’ll take a peek at the art of … sacrilege, by respected Dutch-Swedish painter Martin Van Meytens the Younger, This is a rare double-sided painting, the front depicting a pious nun at prayer and the backside showing her naked bum to the monk who stands behind her. It’s a fun and naughty painting from a time when the catholic religion was a powerful force that declared sexuality as only for procreation through the bonds of marriage.