Even More Paris Pictures!

May 5, 2009

I went to Paris again, this time with coworkers. It was fun. I actually got inside the Louvre, which was a pleasure denied to me last time. I almost, more or less, made this trip to go to the Louvre, but I also got to see Paris at night from the top of the Eiffel Tower, which was amazing. The city must spend a fortune lighting up all the monuments and attractions so you can see them so well from the top. It was definitely worth the second trip up the elevator lines. You can see those pictures if you click the link on the left side of this blog.

The first time I went to the Louvre, we got there 15 minutes before it closed on a Tuesday, which was 5 PM that day. This time, we got there right at opening, and I spent the majority of the 4 hours I spent inside looking at sculptures and ancient artifacts. The logic behind this is that I can study paintings by looking at pictures of the paintings. Some small details, ones I don’t know enough about painting to appreciate, will be lost on me, I understand. But sculptures are something that are meant to be engaged in a 3D environment, walked around, and studied from different angles. I saw ancient works of Art like Venus de Milo, up to contemporary French pieces, and many masterpieces like the Borghese collection. It was wonderful.

Also, I got to see a lot of half naked marble women! I saw some less than decently clothed men too, but that’s the price I pay for being a student of the liberal arts. Jokes aside, it is suprising the attitude towards the representation of the genders. During times that are classically depicted as sexually repressive, when the “flash of ankle” was scandalous, you could go to the local manor and see a representation of Diana, Hercules, Aphrodite, Mars, Liberty, or a other classical subjects completely naked, or wearing a misplaced sheet.

The one thing I did notice is, hairy men were only in style during the 1960s and 1970s, because every single statue of a man, if he wasn’t wearing a cuirass or some other kind of armor, was hairless, except for his Grecian curls or Roman stubble. I suppose men waxing their chests has a history longer than most other cosmetic practices. Who knew there was the oldest profession in the world first, then hunter-gatherers second, artists third, and a close fourth was someone to give you a good bikini or chest wax?

They really did have it all back then, except for electricity.

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