Thursday, October 11, 2007

fig leaf

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20-inch fig leaf that was used to cover david's crotch from queen victoria's view

tomorrow in london a new exhibit opens, titled 'seduced: art + sex from antiquity to now.'

the exhibit features, along with andy warhol's 41-minute film 'blow job' + artifacts from the kinsey institute, the plaster fig leaf that once shielded queen victoria's 'not-amused' eyes from the sight of the modestly endowed crotch of michelangelo's 14-foot statue of david.

i propose that this plaster fig leaf be adopted by the u.s. congress as the official symbol of the united states, a nation most modest about the human body when it's not being slashed or humiliated in horror films or p.o.w. camps.

the leaf could replace the eagle or the eyeball atop the pyramid on paper currency.

as a people, we easily out-victoria queen victoria (as well as out-herod king herod) in almost all categories of possible comparison.

for those who are interested, the statue's johnson is uncircumcised, unlike jewish king david's historical putz.

the explanation i've heard is that sculptors in michelangelo's italy imitated the ancient greek ideal of beauty.

the greeks felt that circumcision was an irrational + brutal mutilation of masculinity.

the tiny pecker, too, owes something to greek aesthetics.

greeks idealized youth, particularly the point in life when mature masculinity, symbolized by the statue's rock-hard pecs + glutes, overlaps with boyish innocence, symbolized by the diminuitive dick.

greeks viewed large cocks as essentially comic--long, hard priapus is a figure of fun in greek art + the large phalli on display in aristophanes' comedy lysistrata were viewed by contemporary audiences as slapstick (pun intended), not erotica.

thus, david's modest, yet comely little thing.

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