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Nymphs and Satyr, by William Bouguereau (Detail)
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  • Response to Bouguereau Criticism

    by Fred Ross

    Bouguereau's beggar girls were not being made to appeal to a 21st century audience jaded and barraged by endless images of the hideous and the horrible in movies and the nightly news.

    Bouguereau's youth you might say ended at just about that point in time when photography was being invented. Color photos, much the less, movies, radio, VCRs, DVDs and the Internet were not yet even a remote shadow on the consciousness of the most creative, educated and aware of the scientific and artistic minds of his day. Indeed, there was no more advanced way to depict humanity and to impact ideas values and beliefs than the fine arts of painting and sculpture.

    His work was in fact the "state of the art" as well as the finest of art.

    And nobody alive could paint children and childhood, and the vast array of subtle thoughts and feelings often caught in fleeting glances, tender and innocent moments, or pensive and troubled expressions that one finds in a richness and depth in Bouguereau's work...unequalled yet in any time.