With the help of Snapchat and instant messaging there’s no doubt nudes are now flying back and forth more than ever, but a racy pic from 1828 proves it’s certainly not a new concept.
Admittedly what was considered ‘racy’ back in the 1800s could have been just the flashing of an ankle, but this nude is the real deal. In other words, it shows boobs.
More specifically, it shows the boobs of American artist Sarah Goodridge. Obviously the front camera wasn’t so readily available in those days, so she used a more traditional, if painstaking, method and used watercolours to paint her self portrait on ivory.
According to the blog Notches the creation measures less than three by four inches, but Sarah chose not to take up any space with the rest of her body and focused solely on her chest.
The nude, titled Beauty Revealed, was reportedly gifted to the famous senator and statesman Daniel Webster, who was also the subject of some of the artist’s work, following the death of his wife.
It seems like Sarah would have been the kind of woman to slide into Daniel’s DMs if the situation was happening today.
Despite being created nearly two centuries ago, the portrait is still making waves today as it’s become a talking point on the r/todayilearned sub-Reddit recently.
The person who posted it described the artwork as ‘probably one of the earliest cases of someone sending nudes’, and many people were quick to make jokes about Beauty Revealed.
Check out the portrait here:
The top comment is one person very rightly pointing out how the post proved even the most personal images aren’t always kept secret:
And here we are almost 200 yrs later looking at ’em… Protect your data folks! Once they get out they’re or forever.
Another user joked the art was ‘the first time a chick Photoshopped her own picture’ in response to an art fan who explained how the piece had been critiqued in the past, commenting:
Although Goodridge was aged forty when she painted this miniature, according to art critic Chris Packard her breasts seem younger, with a “balance, paleness, and buoyancy” which is imbued in part by the harmony of light, color, and balance.
Goodridge might not have expected quite so many people to be still studying her boobs all these years later, but I suppose it’s a compliment to her artwork.
Perhaps water colour portraits will become the new trend when it comes to sending nudes?
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Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.