Beyoncé ‘Renaissance’ Album Cowl Attracts Comparisons to Famed Portray of Woman Godiva

On Thursday afternoon, Beyoncé unveiled the quilt for Renaissance, her latest album, and lots of followers instantly took to social media that it appears to be like rather a lot like a famed portray from the nineteenth century.

The duvet, which was shot by Carlijn Jacobs, contains a scantily clad Beyoncé atop a silvery horse. It bears quite a lot of similarities to John Collier’s 1880/98 portray Woman Godiva, which depicts a nude girl who figures prominently in Anglo-Saxon lore.

As legend has it, Woman Godiva rode a horse within the buff someday throughout the eleventh century as a protest in opposition to plans from her husband Leofric to impose a harsh tax on the residents of Coventry, England. Leofric mentioned he would name it off if she appeared on the town bare and on horseback, and she or he took him up on this dare. (She is believed to have instructed all of the residents to remain dwelling so she may retain her dignity, and all however one, a person now often called Peeping Tom, did, though this half is regarded as apocryphal.)

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The portray by Collier, an artist related to the Pre-Raphaelite motion, is at present held by the Herbert Artwork Gallery & Museum in Coventry, which owns a group of works that depict Woman Godiva.

Painting of a nude woman on top of a horse.

John Collier, Woman Godiva, 1880/98. By way of Wikimedia Commons

Beyoncé herself didn’t point out Woman Godiva or the Collier portray when she introduced the album cowl, although her caption for it on Instagram appeared to echo a number of the themes of the Anglo-Saxon legend.

“My intention was to create a protected place, a spot with out judgment,” Beyoncé mentioned of her album. “A spot to be freed from perfectionism and overthinking. A spot to scream, launch, really feel freedom. It was a lovely journey of exploration.”

The comparability to Collier’s portray was made by numerous fan accounts on Twitter, a few of which additionally linked the Renaissance cowl to the time in 1977 when Bianca Jagger arrived at New York’s famed Studio 54 membership on horseback.

ARTnews has reached out to a consultant for Jacobs for touch upon the potential Collier reference.

In prior tasks, Beyoncé has made many art-historical references. She has appeared along with her husband, the rapper Jay-Z, close to masterpieces in the Louvre and a rarely seen Jean-Michel Basquiat painting, and she or he has featured works by David Hammons, Richard Prince, Derrick Adams, Conrad Egyir, Robert Pruitt, and extra in her music movies. She has even concerned artists in her numerous initiatives, bringing on photographers like Awol Erizku and Tyler Mitchell to take her portrait.

Up to now, it stays to be seen whether or not Renaissance will make any extra allusions to artwork historical past—the primary single, “BREAK MY SOUL,” doesn’t have any apparent ones. The album’s title, nonetheless, appears to counsel there may very well be extra nonetheless to return. Followers will discover out for certain when the album drops on July 29.


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