Search This Blog

31 October 2013

Vleeptron honors its vow of presenting clear big masterpiece of art / the story of my Uncle Doughboy in Montmartre

Cliquez cette fiche pour le plus grande. has e-mailed Vleeptron that it can no longer accomodate the deluge of Comments requesting a clearer, bigger image of Ingres' "The Turkish Bath" / "Le Bain Turc." 

We tried to filch the image from the Louvre itself, where it hangs, but they anticipated our penchant for filching and we couldnt right-click COPY IMAGE. 

This one is from Wikipedia, and therefore not subject to any laws or punishments associated with digital burglary.

(One of my first image filches was an ancient manuscript of Euclid's proof of the Pythagorean Theorem from the Vatican Library.)

Anyway Vleeptron continues its charter vow to share the masterpieces of Earth's visual arts with its uptown hi-tone sophisticated readers. 

M. Ingres was 82 when he paid some young French women to sit around his atelier for a month or so while he immmortalized them. 

Or maybe they just dropped by the atelier for free. I wouldn't demand a paycheck for a month like that, as long as the dude provided refreshments and kept the fire burning. 

This was France, so there was probably some absinthe to pass around.

Please observe that apparently the artist did provide ample refreshments. These babes look as if they've been eating regularly and sufficiently. And they're not faking it with any tricks of clothing or foundation garments. WYSIWYG.
* * *

This may be an appropriate moment to post  

The Story Of My Doughboy Uncle  
& his Adventures in Paris

My Uncle was a kid from Baltimore and either got conscripted or joined the Army to fight World War 1 and Make The World Safe for Democracy, and Beat The Hun. He had never been out of Baltimore before.

Years later he would tell his little nieces that he had chased Kaiser Wilhelm II around a tree in Berlin, but had not caught him, and the Kaiser escaped.

Anyway my Uncle the Doughboy was affianced to a nice Jewish woman in Baltimore, and they planned to marry as soon as Uncle Doughboy won World War 1 and then sailed back to Baltimore with the other Yankee Doodle Doughboys.

The war ground to a halt with the 1918 Armistice, and all the American soldiers were supposed to march onto ships and sail back home to the USA.

Weeks passed, and thousands of American soldiers came home.

But no word from my uncle. His family and his fiancee were worried. No Uncle. No letters from Uncle.

My uncle's family got a car and drove to nearby Washington DC and went to many Army offices asking about their missing soldier.

Finally the Army found Army documents that said that he had chosen to take his Army discharge in France, and stay in France, and not sail home.

He had been in good health when he stopped being a soldier and became a civilian. The Army told the worried family they were not responsible for him anymore. If they wanted to find him now, they must contact the Red Cross.

The Red Cross in Washington DC telegraphed the Red Cross in France, and a Red Cross representative began trying to find my uncle. The Red Cross representative -- I don't know if it was a man or a woman -- traced him to an address in Paris, to an apartment building in a low-rent neighborhood.

The address was up 5 flights of stairs, and when the Red Cross agent knocked, the apartment door opened, and the Red Cross agent looked inside.

There were many empty wine bottles on the floor. There were many filled wine glasses on the table.

In a corner of the cramped apartment was a young French woman standing and posing in the nude.

Since his Army discharge, Uncle Doughboy had grown a pencil-thin moustache, was wearing a beret, and was painting the nude young woman on canvas with a palette and an easel and camel-hair brushes. 

There were 3 or 4 other men and some more pretty young French women in the apartment in various stages of déshabillé. The men seemed also to be recently discharged American soldiers.

Agents of the Red Cross cannot carry weapons or handcuffs of any kind, and they are not police officers, they have no authority to order anyone to come with them.

All the Red Cross agent had was his/her wit and mouth.

All I know is that Uncle Doughboy promptly sailed back to Baltimore, married his fiancee, and resumed his career in the tailoring and laundry business. My uncle and my aunt stayed married for about half a century and had a bunch of kids.

I don't think my uncle ever painted any more young nude women.

So ... if you were the Red Cross agent outside the cheap 5th floor apartment in Montmartre ... what would you say to the young American guy in the beret and moustache painting the nude young French woman, to convince him voluntarily to sail back to Baltimore and marry his fiancee and become a tailor and laundry guy?

No comments: