Drunken Faun

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Drunken Faun C. 220 B.C.E., Sculptor Unknown.

By GARY WHITTAKER

The nude (nude not naked) form has dominated the artistic scene of humanity since cave painting was a legitimate career. However not all nudes are created equal. Greco-Roman and their offspring depicted nudity heroically; this particular disciple of Dionysus displays his genitalia proudly as if to say "Ya, I had way to much to drunk, but hey watcha going to do about it? Nothing, ya that's I thought... punk." Similar sentiment can be found in every artistic display of nudity from the Reign of Alexander the Great to the rise and fall of Rome and through the Renaissance; till a bunch of  painters in the 1890's decided to paint ACTUAL people, the gall.

Once the flood gates of depicting actual people were pried open by Munch, Picasso, Gauguin and their cohorts, they could not be closed. It started out simply, bathers dipping into a tub or river, their dumpy un-sculpted bodies proudly on display. Rolls of fat and wide hipped males became the norm, the gladiators of Rome were slayed by gangling youths and unshaven women.

Artistic nudity had hit bedrock, Gauguin painted nude Tahitian women with fat deposits, nude prostitutes hung in galleries to shock the public. Then Duchamp and Dada came with industrial grade mining equipment. They burrowed below the crust of earth itself and crashed through the roof of hell, here they discovered in the seventh circle the most feared style of nudity, and abstract nude.  

Duchamp labored on his sarcastic depiction of a women for nearly a decade. The final product consisted of shattered pane of glass with a technical drawing of a mold in which molten metal was to be poured. The Bride Stripped Bare reduced the nude human form to the very essential - the reproductive organs.  

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