Re: The Tarot de Paris (The Parisian Tarot)

#91
I'm with SteveM. It looks to me like a coyly posturing female pope.

"Come hither, big boy. Don't let my big ole' book scare you away--this silly thing. Really, come closer. Did you notice the two lil' nudes on my big comfy throne, right alongside my luscious thighs?"

Or something like that. I'm out of practice.

Re: The Tarot de Paris (The Parisian Tarot)

#92
OK, suppose the card depicts a 'coying posturing female pope'. Why exactly? I suppose the artist could have used that posture to denote/reinforce her gender - if women were thought of in that way in the 17th cent. it would work perhaps. But it doesn't seem enough of a reason to me. I just have a strong feeling that these odd details are important and worth thinking about/looking into.

Pen
He's not the Messiah, he's a very naughty boy...

Re: The Tarot de Paris (The Parisian Tarot)

#93
Pen wrote:OK, suppose the card depicts a 'coying posturing female pope'. Why exactly? I suppose the artist could have used that posture to denote/reinforce her gender - if women were thought of in that way in the 17th cent. it would work perhaps. But it doesn't seem enough of a reason to me. I just have a strong feeling that these odd details are important and worth thinking about/looking into.

Pen
Well French pornography, which began to boom in the 17th century, often satirised sexual repression and hyposcrisy. A popular anti-clerical sub-genre targeted the church and featured horny priests, monks and nuns in cheap pamphlets of illustrated stories that were widely available : as much a stock in trade of an opportunist printer/publisher as cards perhaps. Such pamphlets along with cards and prostitutes were common fare at gambling houses. Where one found gambers, one also found prostitutes and pornography, perhaps the image is reflective of the environment and the clientelle in which it was likely to be used, the gambling den; and produced perhaps by some the same printers who published the pornography.
Immature poets imitate; mature poets steal; bad poets deface what they take, and good poets make it into something better, or at least something different.
T. S. Eliot

Re: The Tarot de Paris (The Parisian Tarot)

#94
That's interesting, Steve, I hadn't thought of that particular satirical angle - thanks. If it's true of one card in the Tarot de Paris, surely there must be more evidence in the rest of the deck. I must spend some time with it very soon (and look for some of those images you mentioned too).

Pen
He's not the Messiah, he's a very naughty boy...

Re: The Tarot de Paris (The Parisian Tarot)

#95
But... another thought. The Tarot de Paris doesn't feel or look like a cheap deck knocked out by an opportunist publisher and used too commonly. The artwork has a masterful, if not somewhat raw feel in places, and the drawing and cutting must have taken time and care. And if, among all the later Popesses, it's the only one to show this satirical angle, doesn't this indicate that it had had no influence on other decks, and can we draw from this the conclusion that there weren't too many of these decks around (because it was more expensive than the others)?

Pen
He's not the Messiah, he's a very naughty boy...

Re: The Tarot de Paris (The Parisian Tarot)

#96
The Book of the Prick, though 16th century and Italian, may provide some context and an example of pornographic satirical works:

http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=WZ_k ... q=&f=false

Academies such as those of the Bugiale or Intrannati (as discussed in the preface of the above book) may be used as exemplars of similar academies / societies that can be found from the 16th century on in many places such as England and in France. I have suggested elsewhere that the Belgium pattern, which places the fool at 22 and replaces the Pope with Bacchus and Popesse with Spanish Captain, is the product of members of such a society of Dutch artists that were based in Rome.
Immature poets imitate; mature poets steal; bad poets deface what they take, and good poets make it into something better, or at least something different.
T. S. Eliot

Re: The Tarot de Paris (The Parisian Tarot)

#97
SteveM wrote: I have suggested elsewhere that the Belgium pattern, which places the fool at 22 and replaces the Pope with Bacchus and Popesse with Spanish Captain, is the product of members of such a society of Dutch artists that were based in Rome.
The Bentvueghels, see thread on Nicolas Bodet over on AT, from about post 25:

http://www.tarotforum.net/showthread.ph ... ntvueghels
Immature poets imitate; mature poets steal; bad poets deface what they take, and good poets make it into something better, or at least something different.
T. S. Eliot

Re: The Tarot de Paris (The Parisian Tarot)

#98
SteveM wrote:The Book of the Prick, though 16th century and Italian, may provide some context and an example of pornographic satirical works:

http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=WZ_k ... q=&f=false

Academies such as those of the Bugiale or Intrannati (as discussed in the preface of the above book) may be used as exemplars of similar academies / societies that can be found from the 16th century on in many places such as England and in France. I have suggested elsewhere that the Belgium pattern, which places the fool at 22 and replaces the Pope with Bacchus and Popesse with Spanish Captain, is the product of members of such a society of Dutch artists that were based in Rome.

Thanks for noting that book, Steve! I have ordered a copy. I love old pornographic literature.

I hope you develop your thesis with regards to the members of the society of artists.
Image

Re: The Tarot de Paris (The Parisian Tarot)

#100
Thanks for those links Steve, I've read all the google books pages I was allowed to access - most interesting, also the thread over at AT. I guess there'd be overlaps in medieval imagery of religious satire, everyday life and what we'd call pornography. I must search out some religious satirical woodcuts (although as the Pope in this deck seems straightforward, her pose may be more to do with her gender than her office), when I've a spare hour or so, in the meantime I've been looking at the cards themselves.

The posture of the Empress and the Queen of Swords both have a posey feel about them - hand on hip - one or two of the male court cards also feature the hand on hip, but in a slightly less obvious way. The Queen of Sword's posture may be to balance the sword.

Image


And I found some funny little faces just below the King of Sword's knees (De Pee's knees...!), see below, enlarged the correct way up (for the faces), and reversed (as on the card).

Image


Given the quirkiness and individuality of this deck, perhaps I shouldn't try to read too much significance into the posture and expression of the Popess, but, hell, I can't help it...

Pen

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