Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Hot Saint Temptation Action

Hello again.  My apologies for the long delay between posts, but I am back with another edition of "16th Century Drug Abusers with Paintbrushes."

Pieter Huys' "The Temptation of St. Anthony," at first glance, appears to be an insane, rambling painting.  Upon closer inspection, one discovers it is much weirder than that.  I would attribute it to booze (pictured on a pedestal to the far right), but that alone cannot possibly account for all of the following.  Can you tell that Pieter liked Hieronymus Bosch?

Skipping over the hunchback nun serving as an owl perch, let the temptations begin with...

A nude lady bearing sausages.  What could be more enticing?  Other than the fact that the sausages are still attached to a cow head.  I guess they are all-beef sausages.  Also, the nude lady appears to be covered with gills from the waist down.  Her headdress reminds me a bit of a cross between a wimple and a manta ray.

If the sausages are not enough of a feast for you, there is always the second course...

Fresh baby on a platter!  So tasty and tender, and served up by the midget offspring of the Jolly Green Giant.

But what sensuous meal would be complete without some music?

Fortunately, the dinner party brought along a giant squirrel with bagpipes to serenade the saint over dinner.  It might help him romance the naked fish lady, too.

Some people just can't wait for the food to be prepared, though.

Here we have an elderly manchild devouring one of his legs, in a position that is an anatomic miracle.  He doesn't seem terribly bothered by the fact he is gnawing his own leg off.  The angry sea-badger behind him seems much more disturbed.


St. Anthony isn't the only one with the potential to get some action at this feast, though.  Here a giant sea monkey flashes the camera, while a very buxom (cat?  wolf?)-lady gets thoroughly fondled by an unidentified creature.  Possibly a kappa.

Other notable features include this cart pulled by people attempting to put their heads up their behinds...

...and because what desert temptation would be complete without it, a sky-joust mounted on flying fish.

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Apotheosis of a Megalomaniac

The Apotheosis of Napoleon I, by Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres (just one off from the initials JEDI).

Apotheosis, for those of you who have lives and don't spend your time rummaging through old books (or reading Dan Brown), is the exaltation of a figure to divine status.  And who better to divinize than Napoleon? 
There he is, being all godly.  And by godly I mean naked.  Notice that nothing else in the picture appears to be billowing quite so dramatically as his cape; I like to think that it has wires in it, and it has been carefully bent into that position.

So.  He gets a crown to wear on top of his crown.  Also he gets a crystal ball.  I guess that might have been more helpful prior to Waterloo.  Maybe it's the sarcastic welcome present of the other gods?  Anyway, now everyone will respect him! 
Except for the horses that are lugging him to heaven.  I swear they are laughing.  It's like this is the most hilarious guy they've had to transport in centuries.  And the angel waving the branch just looks bored. "Oh, isn't he glorious.  Hail Napoleon." *eyeroll*

However, my favorite part of the picture is this:
That woman appears to be wildly lunging out of bed to punch a snake that is strangling some naked men.  Snake-punching is one of the most time-honored traditions associated with celebrating new godhood, right along with palm-waving and lute-playing, and this lady will NOT be outdone.  Also, the Lunging Snake-Punchers would be an excellent name for a band.

Sunday, 4 March 2012

Lions and Tigers and Leopards, Oh My

Peter Paul Ruben's "Tiger- und L√∂wenjagd" is an explosion of testosterone, felines, and good old mutilation.  I am not sure where this group of manly men have gone hunting that they have encountered lions, leopards, AND tigers.  I can only assume that hunting for any one was deemed not enough of a challenge, so perhaps they invaded a local zoo, freed all of the big cats, and then poked them with sticks.  Either that, or it was some kind of intercontinental Felidae Family Reunion.  In fact, the latter might be possible, seeing as the Tiger Family brought along their cubs.

Cubs that the hunters would like to make into adorable stuffed toys!  If they don't get too mutilated by the swords/spears/knives.  We now see why Daddy Tiger is trying to rip that man's arm off.

As for the hunters themselves, most of them look ready to go into full-on zoological melee combat.  These guys, however, seem to not have gotten the memo that they were going to be attacking a full interspecies herd, and instead arrived prepared only for Manly Naked Lion Wrestling.

Alternatively, maybe they are just trying to kindly extract a rotten tooth from the lion's mouth.  With their BARE HANDS.

Finally, there are these two:
They look SO BORED.  "Ho hum, just passing the time with some tiger slaughter.  Yawn.  Hopefully we'll be home in time for Strictly Come Dancing."