Nude, we all are! In our bathrooms, occasionally in our bedrooms, and when a celebrity is, everyone wants to shoot that precious moment by virtue of our hi-tech devices, we were not blessed with in ancient period when the only way to incarcerate those luxurious moments was either painting or sculpture. In the beginning, they were gods, goddesses and angles, shown naked in paintings as symbols of grace, beauty and innocence, but later on during and after renaissance, those were pretty women and handsome men painted undress under the strong wave of humanism, which ultimately supported freedom of expression. That work was simply called ‘Nude’ in
Nudes were hard to accept openly in society but always had a strong appeal for viewers to give them a glance in public while, a detailed look in solitude. Texture and glow of skin, masterly crafted muscles, bones under the tender or strong flesh, skilled the canvas a depth and atmosphere so close to our imagination.
Basically nudes are the concrete form of creator’s thoughts and emotions under a certain instinct of wearing nothing but skin. There was no dress in the beginning of human history and might be so towards the end of ‘human history’. But anatomical study has always been a challenge to be adept in, for painters and sculptors. Religiously nudes were subject to be free from any sensuality, on the contrary, they were taken as an expression of purity and had ‘nothing to do with’ attitude towards mortal life. Saints, goddesses and other sacred figures were above all social and ethical parameters but as soon as normal human beings were painted naked just to show them as humans, it was outlawed by righteous society. Manet’s ‘Lunch on the Grass’ is one example of this dichotomy.
When Raphael (1483-1520) painted ‘THE THREE GRACES’ and David (1460-1523) produced ‘TRIPTYCH OF JEAN DES TROMPES, they promoted the religious thoughts and concepts, while Delacroix’s famous ‘LIBERTY LEADING THE PEOPLE’ was a symbol of pride and honor one could feel for one’s home land although the lady holding the flag was exposed at the top.
Then comes Manet’s (1832-1883) ‘LUNCHEON THE GRASS’ showing a naked women sitting with two gentlemen fully and formally dressed, looking directly into the eyes of the viewer. This painting was really hard to digest for the French society at that time, despite the fact that they were quite interactive with traditional ‘Nudes’, whereas ‘OLYMPIA’ by the same artist was bold enough to get appreciation for the impressionists.
Goya’s (1746-1828) ‘NUDE MAJA’ and Dega’s (1834-1880) key-hole nudes of bathing women got applause and popularity in their respective times that helped this
There was another stream of nude paintings that was neither sacred nor arty, but purely sensuous! That
In Pakistan, where even normal
Shakir Ali, we could say, was the first one to paint abstract nudes as real
What and how a person thinks and perceive, is rendered in
Bernard Berenson (1897) said, “Not what man knows but what man feels concerns
Source by Nadeem Alam