Benjamin Lacombe deals mostly in fairy tales: Snow White, Alice in Wonderland, Madame Butterfly, the Tales of Edgar Allen Poe, Medusa, Ondine, even Marie Antoinette. I classify all these as fairy tales because he has no interest in history, reality, or even, at times, accurate anatomy.
but then there are those pieces which don't find easy classification. Oh, I'm sure with the internet it's possible to figure out in a couple minutes the source of every piece. But I approach these pieces like a scavenger. Things found by chance. For I actually did find them by chance in the glorious landfill that is Pinterest.
I approach the the pieces as if I have nothing except my contemporary understanding of culture, history and literature. These days we are more apt to encounter art this way, out of the superimposed context of a museum.
And there is is a valid and important argument in favor of rejecting titles, authors names, in fact all context so that we may approach a piece of work freshly and freely. It makes the piece more ours because our interpretation personal and unmolested.
Approaching Lacombe's works relatively unfettered has been a horrifying journey into my childhood and has caused me to reevaluate melancholy and my relationships with animals. It has not been pleasant.
The figures uncomfortably fit within their scenes. The animation is obvious: the heads are larger than normal, the eyes extraordinarily large and round: the bodies have the dimensions of what would be defined as "cute". The colors are vibrant, there are adorable cats, the women are dressed lavishly and enviously, and the figures may or may not be dead.
These pieces are quite horrifying, but lack the traditional dread which would accompany it. Rather, the characters in these works have resigned themselves to their story. They have complete hopelessness. They look at us with the last expression a suicide would have.
I've said too much. So much for my quest to create a fresh, free art experience. Enjoy. Or, as at least, try to.
Princesses are a relatively new phenomena. Devised in the 90s, the group was a gimmick designed to bolster falling sales and puff up Disney appeal. It worked to a staggering degree. One cannot go into a Disney store, or any building that has children, without being inundated by pastel tulle, glitter and bejeweled crowns. Being a Princess is an ideal that all girls (and secretly, I'm sure, some boys and transchildren) don't just aspire to be. They already are princesses. They can wear the crowns and tulle and glitter because they are special and magical and one day their prince will come.
Without a moment's hesitation, feminist were all over this like maggots on a dead caribou. They have many great points about the diminishment of a girl's abilities and talents, the hope to be saved by a man, the inability to be in a story that doesn't involve romance and a platonic relationship with a man. Not to mention the emphasis on appearance, the implied sexualizing of young girls, the heavy make up and skinny bodies that provoke speculation that Barbie is a princess herself.
None of that matters at all. If anything, I think adult women are much more obsessed with these attributes than little girls.
All one has to do is search on "Disney Princess" on Pinterest and one's computer nearly has a melt down. Women have taken this Princess obsession to quite complex levels which are intellectually dizzying and culturally amazing.
Artists have created the "What if" Princess. What if the Princesses all had blue eyes (for example)? What if the Princesses were all dogs? What if the Princesses were jewelry?
These are only a few of the examples I found, and it's a long list. I wanted to include as many as possible to illustrate my point. By the way, almost all of these images I found on BuzzFeed. I think BuzzFeed has fertilized this wonderful madness. And I also think this is entirely illegal and the Disney Corporation would react poorly to these manipulations of their copyrighted material.
1. What if the Disney princesses were burlesque showgirls?
I'm Lady Ristretto, writing under a pseudonym. My pseudonym has a pseudonym.