15 thoughts on “Ideals of feminine beauty

  1. Chantel McKinley

    I think she did a wonderful job giving the women in the paintings a more feminine look. The women protrayed in the original paintings had more of a masculine built to them because without being able to have a female model the artist were unable to create a woman in more feminine way. The original paintings does not show the sleeker and softer side of a woman. The way Anna protrays the women is the idea of how women are suppose to look. The changes of the women’s bodies I believe does not take away from the paintings, but in way gives the paintings a more feminine touch to them.

  2. Chantel McKinley

    continuation from above comment: I believe that Anna gives the women in the paintings the sensual look that the original artists
    was trying to show in the women, but was not able to to complete this since they used the male body as the model of creating the female body. She brings out the curves and the slender look of the legs of the women.

  3. Lauren Boyle

    I thought it was a very interesting project. It was also interesting to see the contrast between the female figures. The originals look more masculine, due to the fact that the models used for the paintings were men. This was re-enforced by the contrast of characteristics of the woman between the originals and Giordano’s remakes. For example in the original paintings the women’s thighs were larger, their stomachs are rounder, they also have very masculine waists and shoulders. On the other hand Giordano’s remakes show women with thiner waists and tighter stomachs. She narrows the women’s legs and arms as well to better suite the ideals of a beautiful woman for the current generation.

  4. Margeaux Ducoing

    Giordano’s work is incredible! Her reconstruction of womanly figures in famous paintings really reveals the history behind the several art pieces that she worked on. History tells of past male artists being restricted to practicing their art with only male models, causing the feminine physique to be completely erased from a painting’s female figure. Instead what resulted was a burly, masculine “woman” complete with long hair and tangerine-shaped busts. Through her work, Giordano truly exposes the stark contrast between this “manly woman” persona with the more realistic womanly form. Giodano’s attention to the hips, waist, stomach, and even the arms & legs completely redefine the female characters within the individual pieces, giving a more natural–and even humanly–appearance.

  5. Shilpa Sadarangani

    I was actually really excited to look at the differences in the original paintings and compare them to the ones done by Ms. Giordano. However, when I clicked the links and saw the two versions of each painting, side by side, I was not a fan. While Giordano was able to give the women in the paintings a more feminine figure, which I’m sure was a hard thing to do when the original paintings were made due to male models being used, I didn’t like that Giordano felt the only changes that should be made were slimming the women down. While I don’t think Giordano’s versions in any way diminished the originals, I don’t think they were much of an improvement either. I didn’t feel that her changes accurately portrayed today’s ideals of feminine beauty.

  6. Saydi Juliar

    It’s sad how our culture today seems to view beauty in a sense of physical “skinny.” To me, the altercation of the paintings manifested how corrupt society has become that we can’t view images without thinking of our own terms of beauty. The paintings were done in certain time period and they reflect that period, but the physical of the woman should not be the basis of how we view the picture or how we look at the beauty within the picture. It is amazing what we are able to do nowadays though!

  7. Ruth Bordett

    I think there are good and bad aspects of Giordano’s idea to experiment with the ideals of beauty that have been drastically altered over time. On the one hand, it is very interesting to get such an obvious comparison between the women’s bodies that were depicted as more strong and masculine to the modern depictions which are slimmer and more feminine. However, the beauty ideals depicted in the original paintings are unique to the specific times they were created and should remain authentic as such without any alteration. Either way, Giordano’s work is very intriguing and brings up a lot of interesting issues with todays beauty ideals.

  8. Rachel Feola

    I absolutely love this work. It speaks volumes to how differently body image is viewed today as it was back then. I feel that this work should b posted everywhere for everyone to see. It not only shows waht was viewed as ideal then, but it also shows what healthy looks like compared to what todays ideals hold. The artist is a genius and does a fantastic job at speaking to how distorted self image has become.

  9. Megan Rosengrant

    I have been thinking about these sets of images for awhile, and I think I can now join this dialogue. To begin, I raise the common phrase. The idea of beauty subjective. On a basic level, I find that the originals of the works presented are of an archaic way of thought. That the idealized woman is defined by the qualities men. Sure, these updated works can speak of a male dominated society where beauty was based of the male figure, or how the idea of female beauty has changed over time. But to me, I think these sets of images are more personal, and more complicated, than these ideas.

    Women have allowed themselves to be swept up and away by the conceptions of beauty from an outside source. I think what Giordano is doing here is taking conceptions of beauty, and defining what beauty is from a woman’s perspective. Women value tiny waists, women value the smooth curvilinear lines shown in these works. They value the details that are shown here. Many argue that these ideas have been force fed to women by a patriarchal figure. And while this may be true, the woman herself has absorbed this garbage. She and she alone has accepted what these forms of beauty are classified as. I think these images actually serve as a call to action. These images effect me because they challenge me to find what I find beautiful. Giordano has defined beauty. Why can’t I?

    I find that the details of these works, and the fact that the changes are subtle, incredibly powerful. You as the viewer expect huge changes from an updated work. Yet in reality, only waist sizes have really changed. The confidence of the women in the paintings, as well as their pride and intrinsically known and accepted sensuality is what captures attention. Not waist size. Perhaps, above all other meaning, that is the true message.

  10. Celina Neal

    Seeing the edited images side by side with the originals really made clear the differences between the figures. But if I had seen the edited ones by themselves, I don’t think I would’ve been too critical of them. It’s interesting that we are more desensitized to such a thin beauty ideal without realizing it. I think this art shows that desensitivity and is definitely meant to be a political statement on that. Looking back at other traditional images of women now it makes me wonder why the beauty standard has become what it is today.

  11. Gwen Fiorillo

    In my opinion, I don’t think either body style looks better or worse. Giordano definitely portrays ideal body images for women of the twenty-first century, with the exception of the pale skin. The only real difference to me in any of the images was the legs and the waist both being slimmer. This cultures obsession with being thin is a new idea. This wasn’t always the case in history, as seen in some prehistoric figurines of women. But, other aspects of the women’s bodies were fairly similar such as height, breast size and face shape.

  12. Brittany Johnson

    I appreciate this work a lot because while the originals painted women as more masculine, they were still somehow more beautiful and realistic than those who were edited. In my eyes, true beauty is uncaring and natural. All the original women had flaws (from a modern perspective) but they were each distinguishable. Every edit made was incredibly similar and I think that speaks to the cookie cutter mold every woman is expected to follow nowadays.

  13. Caroline Thompson

    I absolutely loved this. This really opens your eyes on how disgusting our society standards can be. The original paintings are beautiful and the women look really healthy. Also, they look more masculine with the depiction of muscles on their bodies. The recreation shows a more slender woman in the waist but with larger breasts and buttocks. The women in the original paintings also look more realistic with their body shapes. Our society today has also the opposite look on women’s bodies compared to back then. It use to be that if you were overweight you were more desirable because you had money for food to gain that weight. Now its about losing weight and staying as small as you can. I found this article very eye opening.

  14. Crisa Young

    It’s crazy how different the images become, how such minute changes can completely change the impression of the work. The overall feeling is completely adapted. Truly it is a marvel at how time makes such drastic transitions between ideal standards of beauty and human excellence. The illustration is perfectly executed. When the image is modernized I feel almost as if I am looking at a model in a magazine. It also becomes that much more apparent that current beauty standards are so much more unrealistic with how paper thin the women become. However, it is important to remember that when any attribute is idealized it in no way depicts the standard, especially when it is of humans imagining other humans. We often are blindest to the truest things and we often overlook the simplest realities, that being the primitive need to distort our own physical appearances and the regular attempts to alter and superficially enhance our perceived inadequacies of the flesh.


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