October 14, 2011 § 2 Comments
One thing I think I have talked about before is how much support I am getting from friends during all this rubbish. You have been outstanding, (as have family, before they start). I’ve been amazed at how considerate people are, and the time they are prepared to give to helping me through all this. All to be hurrahed about. Made me like this picture.
This is The Two Friends, by Toulouse-Lautrec, painted in 1874 and it’s kind of how I feel. Hugged and and loved. Hoping that in due course that I can be the hugger instead of the huggie for all you lovely folk – although hopefully not in the same circs. You can find this picture in the National Gallery. (And just to say, while it may be a picture of two prostitutes, that doesn’t reflect on any of my friends.)
However, all that is a bit mushy, so here are odder pictures of women together.
According to an inscription on the painting, it shows, ‘Two Ladies of the Cholmondeley Family, Who were born the same day, Married the same day, And brought to Bed the same day’. According to the Tate’s website, “the format echoes tomb sculpture of the period.” All a bit odd, and again with the nightmare, uncomfortable clothes. We don’t know who the artist is but he was probably from Chester, close to where I was brought up. It was painted about 1600. You can see this at Tate Britain.
Even stranger is Gabrielle d’Estrées et une de ses soeurs, again by an unknown artist and from around 1594.
The picture shows Gabrielle d’Estrées, mistress of King Henry IV of France, sitting up in a bath, while her sister sits beside her and pinches her right nipple. Apparently, this pinching symbolizes Gabrielle’s pregnancy, and is about the milk the breast will produce. I’m quite glad we ladies are no longer celebrating news of a pregnancy in this manner.
I haven’t actually seen this picture – it’s in The Louvre – but it was suggested to me by Liz, one of the friends so praised above.