Riddle of a Scandalous French Painting Is Solved, Researcher Says
By Adam Nossiter

PARIS — For over 150 years, the famous painting’s origin was as mysterious as its subject — a meticulous close-up of a woman’s genitals — was considered unspeakable. No head, no arms, one breast: only a torso, finely rendered. Who posed for this notorious nonportrait by the celebrated troublemaker of 19th-century French realist painting, Gustave Courbet?

Gustave Courbet’s “The Origin of the World” at an exhibition in Paris in 2007. A historian says the 19th-century painting is almost certainly of Constance Quéniaux, a dancer at the Paris Opera.


on October 2nd, 2018