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Francois Boucher was perhaps the most prominent representative of the painting of the French Rococo era. The artist was awarded numerous awards during his lifetime and was his man at the court of Louis the Fifteenth, whose portraits of his favorite, the famous Marquise de Pompadour, repeatedly painted. The talent of the artist is multifaceted; he painted paintings, painted backdrops for the theater scene, created engravings; he painted on porcelain, painted fans and made sketches for fabrics. But most clearly Boucher's talent manifested itself in painting, in the depiction of mythological and biblical scenes. The background for them has always been pastoral landscapes and ancient buildings that did not exist in reality. Mythological painting Boucher sought to give the appearance of painting on porcelain. In these works, he used a lot of bright colors, but the general tone led to a sparkling pink-golden gamut, decorative and festive. All the characters of his genre scenes are sensual, colorful and frivolous.
The plot of Ice and the Swan is a classic story of the seduction of a young woman, the wife of the Spartan king Zeus, who took the form of a large white bird. As a plot, this legend was very popular both in art and in literature. Sculptures and mosaics depicting Leda and her winged friend have been preserved since ancient times. In the days of the Cinquecento, the plot gained particular popularity; Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and Caravaggio painted paintings on this subject. In the interpretation of Bush, the scene acquires a carnal, erotic sound; Leda’s body looks earthly and sexy. At the same time, the French author performs the canvas with its inherent ease - frivolous and glossy, it does not cause any special base associations.
In the picture of Leda and the Swan, a white bird, bending its thin neck, stretches tensely to a beautiful naked woman. Leda looks at the swan with coquetry and lust. Similar frivolous images on the verge of decency were extremely fashionable at that time; rich people bought them to decorate interiors.
There is an opinion that Boucher specially wrote his works in such a way that they fit perfectly in color into any interior, in harmony with tapestries, furniture and porcelain. The saturated blue and green colors of the background are diluted with the soft radiance of flesh-pink and golden in the image of the bodies; in the feathers of a swan, delicate lilac reflections are visible. The folds of the bedspreads are written in rich scarlet and ocher yellow. The bodies of the beauties are painted in accordance with the then fashion trends - lush, chubby, earthy, with an abundance of small folds. In Rococo times, only this type of body was considered beautiful.
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