Brigid Brophy

Inveterate reader Jacob Wren turned me on to Brigid Brophy‘s book about myth and social psychosis, Black Ship to Hell. I agree with what she says, and mostly with how she says it, but despite the attractive title I don’t find that the book shocks and surprises me as much as Ehrenzweig does, as I was hoping it would. Here is an interesting quote. I take the painting very seriously, but am not absolutely sure that Brophy has it right. The association with Shakespeare is intriguing though.

“Venetian mythology pictures, with their strapping, glorious, mature gods and goddesses, seem to be suggesting to us what an adulthood men and women might have enjoyed if (though the criticism is only implied) Christianity had not imposed its embargoes on sensuality. Veronese’s marvellous Venus and Adonis, in the Prado, breathes the very high summer air of Anthony and Cleopatra: the nobleness of life, it asserts, is to do thus.”

Paolo Veronese, Venus and Adonis 1580

Paolo Veronese, Venus and Adonis 1580

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