- Museum number
- Object: Les Curieux en extase, ou les cordons de souliers
One of French prints (Nos. 12634-12641), c. 1815, on the British in Paris continued from No. 12354, &c. The Hottentot Venus [Saartjie Baartman], see No. 11577, &c., transferred to Paris, is exhibited naked except for a loin-cloth. She stands in the attitude of the Medici Venus, directed to the left on a low stand inscribed 'La Belle Hottentote'. Two Highland soldiers inspect her. One (right), a foot on a chair, leans forward as if to measure her projecting posterior; the other (left) stoops foward, hand on knee. A young Parisienne stoops to tie her shoe (as in No. 12634) and stare. She says 'A quelque chose malheur est bon'. A fourth spectator is a well-dressed man (left) inspecting the Venus through an eye-glass.
- Production date
Height: 222 millimetres
Width: 295 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- (Description and comment from M. Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', IX, 1949)
The commentator, Ouvry, notes that he saw the Venus, that she died in Paris of small-pox, and that her skeleton is preserved at the École de Médecine. Her death was announced in the Paris papers of 1 Jan. 1816. 'Examiner', 1816, p. 4.
Original, 'Les Curieux en extase . . . ', De Vinck, No. 9266 [28 Oct. 1815].
De Vinck gives the date of 28 October 1815 for the legal deposit of this satire by Charon (who was its author); the entry in the 'Bibliographie de France' was on 4 November. Sartjie Baartman, was first exhibited in London and then taken to Paris where she was first shown as a public spectacle on 18 September 1814. She died in Paris of small-pox: her death was announced in the Paris press on 1 January 1816.
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
2007 Mar-Jun, London, National Portrait Gallery, 'Between Worlds:...'
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number