Random Images: A Guérard Aspirant

I find it interesting and satisfying that a number of our readers are also artists who use this site for inspiration. It is good that artists don’t shy away from this subject matter simply because of people who assume a malevolent intent on the part of artists or publishers. For many of us, young girls inspire awe, both in their form and their personality.

One of our artist readers is a sculptor and was generous enough to share a piece of work inspired by another artist shared on this site, Georges Guérard. This sculptor specializes in sculpting children, both boys and girls.

Completed sculpture

He allowed me to show off his work and wonders which of his friends may also frequent this site can say they saw his work on Pigtails in Paint. Given the times, the artist requested that I not share his name and we did our best to interpret his text which had to be translated from French.

Wax Draft

As for the technique, I sculpt in wax, which is easier for me than clay. When the wax sketch is judged to be finished, with all the details completed, it is embedded in plaster, leaving the base of the feet sticking out of the plaster which will harden around the wax. The plaster is put in the kiln, which melts the wax and causes it to flow out through the feet of the statue.

Plaster showing cavity

The cavity left by the wax is filled with molten tin. The raw tin is very shiny but soon gets a dark patina.

Finished work before patina

Gotthard Schuh in Java and Bali

Gotthard Schuh was born in Germany to Swiss parents in 1897. The Schuh family moved back to Switzerland in 1902. Gotthard had a passion for art, and by 1919 he was active as a painter. He traveled and lived in Italy and Germany before finally returning to Switzerland in 1926. It was at that time he began to work as a professional photographer. Schuh would come to be much more renowned as a photographer than as a painter. The first illustration in this article is a sketch of a young girl that Schuh created in 1922. Although it demonstrates his talent as sketch artist, Schuh’s photos are, in my opinion, superior to his drawing.

Gotthard Schuh – Study of a Young Girl (1922)

Schuh joined the staff of the Zürcher Illustrierte magazine in 1932. He also worked as a freelance photographer for other European magazines during the 1930s. Photographic assignments required him to travel throughout Europe, and in March 1938 he began an eleven-month journey through Singapore, Sumatra, Java and Bali.

Javanese Tobacco Worker is the only photo that I am sure is not from Bali in this article. The model was photographed from a low angle, giving a sense of dignity in that the viewer must look up to the model.

Gotthard Schuh – Javanese Tobacco Worker (1938)

Balinese Girl is also photographed from a low angle. This is my favorite of the photograhs in this article. Palm tree and girl combine to make a dramatic photo.

Gotthard Schuh – Balinese Girl (ca.1938)

Singapore at the time was part of the British Empire; it was an island city that was a bastion of British military power in the Far East, and was a thriving commercial center. Sumatra and Java are both large populous Islamic islands that were then ruled by the Dutch. Bali was also a Dutch territory, but it is a smaller island, less westernized and less influenced by Islam. Bali retains its pre-Islamic, pre-European traditions more than the other places Schuh visited. Balinese temple dancers are famous around the world for their graceful movement. It is not surprising that Bali was featured in so many of the Schuh photographs.

Tanzende Mädchen is the title for the next three photos. Dances are performed to please the Balinese gods. During the performance, the dancers fall into a trance and are believed to be posessed by the diety. Sanghyang Dedari is one of the most famous of the Balinese temple dances. It is performed only by prepubescent girls, preferably about eight years old.

Gotthard Schuh – Tanzende Mädchen, Bali (1938)

Gotthard Schuh – Tanzende Mädchen, Bali (1938)

Gotthard Schuh – Tanzende Mädchen, Bali (1938)

The following three portraits of girls are typical of Schuh’s photographic style. Note that none of the models are looking directly at the camera.

Gotthard Schuh – Bali (1939)

Gotthard Schuh – Untitled (ca. 1938)

Gotthard Schuh – Untitled (ca. 1938)

The last three photographs are also of temple dancing girls. In 1937, shortly before Schuh’s visit to Bali, the documentary Trance and Dance in Bali was filmed by Margaret Mead and Gregory Bateson. Schuh’s photographs document the same dances, but Schuh appeared to be more interested in the artistic merit of his images.

Gotthard Schuh – Untitled (ca. 1938) (1)

Gotthard Schuh – Untitled (ca. 1938) (2)

Gotthard Schuh – Untitled (ca. 1938) (3)

A book of photographs from this trip Inseln der Götter (Islands of the Gods) was published in 1941. The book is Schuh’s most famous work. Gregor Krause had published a book with photographs of Bali (Bali 1912) and Inseln der Götter is in some ways similar. Krause, however, concentrated on glamour photos of adult women, while Schuh had more youthful models. Schuh died in Switzerland in 1969.

Suzanne Szasz

IMPORTANT NOTE: Despite appearing under my name Bob Freely, I’m not really the author of this post. That honor goes to my friend Jerrold, who decided to write about this talented artist and who composed the text. I did contribute the pictures from which we jointly selected samples and assisted him in getting them added, but ultimately this is his baby, and he deserves the credit.

Suzanne Szasz was a prominent child photographer and author of child photography books.

Suzanne Szasz – Photographing Children (1987, page 118)

She was born (as Suzanne Szekely) on October 20, 1915 in Budapest and emigrated to the United States in 1946. Her second husband was the photographer Ray Shorr, from 1956 until his death in 1994. She herself never had children.

Suzanne Szasz – Child Photography Simplified (1976, page 96)

After winning a cover competition of the Ladies’ Home Journal, she became a freelance photographer, selling pictures to magazines such as Life, Look, Parents, Good Housekeeping, McCall’s and Family Circle. She was a founding member of the American Society of Magazine Photographers. In 1959 Suzanne was named one of the ten best women photographers in the United States.

Suzanne Szasz – Child Photography Simplified (1976, page 58)

Szasz died while visiting relatives in Budapest on July 3, 1997. An obituary described her work as “revealing and unsentimental pictures of children and family life”.

Suzanne Szasz – Child Photography Simplified (1976, pages 88-89)

A very good example of her talent was the sequence about Chrissy and her new dress. It appears in her book Child Photography Simplified (1976). She explains how after taking the second picture in the sequence, a full nude from the rear, she decided to have the little girl make a full turn while getting dressed. In each picture, she has rotated a little more toward the front.

Suzanne Szasz – The Body Language of Children (1978, pages 80-81)

Among her other books were The Body Language of Children (1978), Modern Wedding Photography (1977), Photographing Children (1987), Sisters, Brothers and Others (1984) with Elizabeth Taleporos, Young Folks’ New York (1960) with Susan E. Lyman, and We Are Six: The Story of a Family (1959) with Clara and Morey Appell.

Suzanne Szasz – Photographing Children (1987, page 137)

Some of the beautiful pictures of children in the 1968 edition of the sex-education book Growing Up by Karl de Schweinitz were also by Susanne Szasz (unfortunately, examples could not be found for this post).

Random images: Virginie Demont-Breton

Virginie Élodie Marie Thérèse Demont-Breton (1859–1935) is a French genre painter. Daughter of the painter and engraver Jules Breton and niece of the painter Émile Breton, she married the painter Adrien Demont. They had three daughters, and one of them, Adrienne Ball-Demont, would become a painter and sculptor.

She had a precocious artistic career, exhibiting her paintings at the Salon des artistes français in 1880 and obtaining the gold medal at the Universal Exhibition in 1883, 1889 and 1900.

Her early works consist mainly of portraits and historical or mythological scenes in the academic style. After settling in the village of Wissant on the North Sea coast in 1890, she started painting the life of fishermen and their families, in a naturalistic style.

My first selection is one of her early works. At an auction at Sotheby’s, it has been estimated between US$40,000 and $60,000.

Virginie Demont-Breton - Une surprise (1879)

Virginie Demont-Breton – Une surprise (1879)

My second selection dates from the period when she moved to Wissant. It was also auctioned by Sotheby’s, being estimated between $30,000 and $40,000.

Virginie Demont-Breton - Fillette à la guirlande de fleurs des champs (c.1890)

Virginie Demont-Breton – Fillette à la guirlande de fleurs des champs (c.1890)

Virginie Demont-Breton was deeply committed to the recognition of women painters. She joined the Union des femmes peintres et sculpteurs in 1883, and was its president from 1895 to 1901. Together with the sculptor Hélène Bertaux, she obtained the official admission of women to the École des Beaux-Arts and their right to compete to the Prix de Rome.

Bruno Héroux

Louis Carl Bruno Héroux was born in Leipzig, Kingdom of Saxony in 1868. He began his study of art, specializing in woodcuts, at age 18. He finished his art education in 1892, and shortly after that he started work as a magazine illustrator. From 1900 on he was a freelance artist, and one of the most popular of the time for engravings and etchings. He illustrated the three-volume Handatlas of Human Anatomy by Werner Spalteholz (1913). Most of his illustrations are of adults, but a few of his pictures are of girls reviewed in this article.

Bruno Héroux – Ex Libris Anna von Zur Westen (circa1900)

Bruno Héroux – Ex Libris Toni Kruse (circa1910)

Bibliophiles in the early 20th century would often glue bookplates to the inside book cover to identify ownership. The first image is a bookplate for Anna von zur Westen. Look closely at the dark border around the girl and you will see grotesque faces. The border is quite a contrast to the happy girl in the sunshine.  The bookplate for Toni Kruse features both a young girl and an adult woman.  Note the faces of children playing musical instruments in the foliage above the woman and girl.

Bruno Héroux – Girl with Hat and Muff (circa1890)

Girl with Hat and Muff is one of the simpler Héroux illustrations. It is a little incongruous that she has a muff to warm her hands, yet is nude except for that and her hat. There is something around her feet, as if she had been wearing more clothing and removed her clothes. Girl with Hair Bow and Butterflies is another uncomplicated work. There is some handwriting on it, but I cannot read it. I can make out “EX L. verein Berlin” which I interpret as Berlin Ex Libris Club, and the artist’s signature “B. Héroux”, but nothing more. Can anyone help?

Bruno Héroux – Girl with Hair Bow and Butterflies (no date)

The next three images are greeting cards. Two are New Year’s cards, for 1907 and 1911, and one is a generic greeting card from 1920. Something is written on the card from 1920; can anybody read it? I can only make out the phrase “Gönner und Freunde”. A dog on the 1911 card has torn up the paper on which 1910 was printed. The writing on it is a New Year’s greeting to his patrons and friends, “für seine Gönner und Freunde Neujahre 1911 B Héroux.”

Bruno Héroux – Greeting Card (1920)

The 1907 card is also dedicated to patrons and friends with best wishes for the New Year. At first I was not sure if the child featured on the 1907 card was intended as a boy or a girl. After looking carefully, I believe it was intended to be a girl. The long flowing hair, the expression, and the hint of a wreath of flowers in the hair is more typical of Héroux’s girls.

Bruno Héroux – New Years Greeting (1911)

Huckepack (Piggyback) is an illustration from a 1911 German newspaper. It appeared under the poem Mai by Wilhelm von Scholz. Der Gold Käse (The Gold Cheese) is a strange title. I thought it may be the title of a children’s story, but I could find no story with that title.  If anybody can offer an explanation for this title, please submit a comment.  The boy in the picture looks like Alfred E. Neuman.

Bruno Héroux – New Years Greeting (1907)

Bruno Héroux – Huckepack (1911)

Elfe und Kröte (Elf and Toad) also appears to be an illustration for a fairy tale.

Bruno Héroux – Der Gold Käse (no date)

Bruno Héroux – Elfe und Kröte (no date)

Bruno Héroux’s personal and business card features a nude young girl. Héroux also featured a nude young girl on the visiting card he designed for Marie Schmidt. People today may find something offensive about a person who has an image of a naked girl on his card. Of course a lot of people today would find the nude little girls unacceptable on bookplates, greeting cards and newspaper illustrations as well.

Bruno Héroux – Business Card (no date)

Cypriot Cinema: Emanuelle Queen of Sados


The following post discusses a film which contains several scenes of simulated physical and/or sexual abuse, some of which involve a minor. While no images of such abuse are included and I have made an effort to be as tactful as possible when discussing such scenes, sensitive readers are urged to proceed with caution. Naturally the discussion of certain scenes necessarily involves some spoilers.

Where’s the line between art and exploitation? What if a film arguably has elements of both? Can the artistic elements redeem the exploitative ones? Such are questions posed by the 1980 film Emanuelle Queen of Sados (alternatively known as Emanuelle’s Daughter or I Mavri Emmanouella, among other titles; here I have used the on-screen title for the English language version. The U.S. DVD cover titles it Emanuelle’s Daughter: Queen of Sados, which is how it is listed in Pigtails’ Pipeline).

Directed by Ilias Milonakos, this Greek/Cypriot production is an not-quite-official entry in the the long-running Emanuelle series staring Laura Gemser—itself an offshoot of the Sylvia Krystal series. Probably due to Gemser’s involvement, this is one of the better-known Greek exports. Like the other entries in the series, Emanuelle Queen of Sados features simulated sex and violence, and co-stars Gemser’s real-life husband Gabrielle Tinti, here playing her love interest Tommy. Harris Stevens plays the main antagonist, Mario. However, what makes this particular film relevant to the site is the young actress Livia Russo, debuting in her first film. Very little is known about her, particularly her exact age at the time of filming, and this appears to be her only screen appearance¹.

The overall plot of the film—a crime drama—involves Emanuelle’s problems after hiring a hitman, Mario, to kill her long-abusive husband, Victor. After the deed is done—being ruled an accidental death by the police—she becomes guardian of her minor stepdaughter, Livia, and executor of her inheritance until Livia is of age—Victor having left everything to his daughter in his will. However, the hitman pursues the pair from Athens to Cyprus wanting the rest of his pay, and her husband’s associates suspect his death was no accident.  Eventually things come to a head in a violent manner.

While Emanuelle is the main character, Livia is central to the plot and what happens to her determines the final outcome, so the scenes detailed below focus only on her part of the story, and just the highlights at that.

We first see Livia (other than in a brief flashback) when Emanuelle drives with her to the airport to board a plane for Cyprus, as Victor has his business and an estate there. Initially, they don’t get along, as Emanuelle is only interested in Livia as a means of accessing her late husband’s fortune, and bosses her around—perhaps because Livia is a reminder of the hated Victor.

Ilias Milonakos – Emanuelle Queen of Sados (1980) (1)

Unfortunately, someone else becomes interested in Livia: Mario. On board the plane, he briefly flirts with Livia before Emanuelle realizes he’s there. Livia doesn’t think anything of it; Emanuelle, however, is disturbed, knowing he is dangerous.

Ilias Milonakos – Emanuelle Queen of Sados (1980) (2)

At a hotel, while Livia showers, Emanuelle explains her feelings about the deceased Victor, having married him only to escape a life of poverty. While Livia did not think highly of her father either—having seen some of the abuse he directed toward Emanuelle (shown in flashbacks)—she doesn’t think Emanuelle is any better. Of course, she doesn’t know Emanuelle is responsible for his death.

Ilias Milonakos – Emanuelle Queen of Sados (1980) (3)

That night at a disco, Livia meets a nice young man named Mike, and a sweet romance blossoms. Like Livia, Mike is played by a novice actor, Vagelis Vartan. Their romance is one of the best elements of the film.

Ilias Milonakos – Emanuelle Queen of Sados (1980) (4)

But Mario turns up again not long after, creepily complementing Livia on her youth and beauty before Emanuelle intervenes. Livia naively thinks he is merely being friendly, and doesn’t understand why Emanuelle doesn’t want her to see him again, since Emanuelle can’t reveal that she know Mario.

Ilias Milonakos – Emanuelle Queen of Sados (1980) (5)

Arriving at Victor’s estate, Emanuelle and Livia fight over photos of Victor—which Emanuelle wants thrown away—and when Livia objects to their removal because he was still her father, Emanuelle slaps her and demands Livia obey her, causing Livia to run outside crying.

Ilias Milonakos – Emanuelle Queen of Sados (1980) (6)

However, things look up for Livia when Mike arrives to take her to the beach, where they get to known each other better. Initially in swimsuits, when they are alone they strip and admire each other, but otherwise things stay pretty tame between them².

Ilias Milonakos – Emanuelle Queen of Sados (1980) (7)

Afterwards, Emanuelle expresses her approval of Mike to Livia, inviting him over, and Emanuelle and Livia becomes friends. In addition to visiting the estate, Mike is also invited along on a tour of various Cypriot landmarks (while at the estate, we see that Emanuelle has restored Victor’s photos to their place, in a concession to Livia’s feelings—a nice touch showing that Emanuelle is beginning to care about her stepdaughter as a person).

Ilias Milonakos – Emanuelle Queen of Sados (1980) (8)

But when Mike and Livia visit the Tomb of the Kings by themselves, and the two become separated, things take a very dark turn.

Ilias Milonakos – Emanuelle Queen of Sados (1980) (9)

Out of nowhere, Mario appears, grabbing Livia. When Mike approaches, Mario hits him and knocks him unconscious, which gives Livia a chance to run away. However, Mario soon catches her on a secluded stretch of beach, and after a brief struggle, he selfishly rapes her in a harrowing scene which spares almost no details³.

I must caution, this is a very difficult scene to watch, and it may be too much for some viewers. Because of the nature of the scene, I have not included a screenshot.

Afterwards, Livia and Mike return to Victor’s estate, where they tell everyone what happened. Emanuelle comforts Livia before going to confront Mario for what he did—having come to care about her stepchild. That confrontation brings the film to its finale.

Ilias Milonakos – Emanuelle Queen of Sados (1980) (10)

Of course, there are many scenes involving the other characters which I have left out here, such as Emanuelle’s romance with Tommy or the actions of Victor’s associates to investigate his murder. I also had to leave out many nice scenes of the Cypriot landscape and landmarks which add to the film’s appeal, but which didn’t affect Livia’s portion of the plot enough to justify showing them as screenshots. The music and cinematography are good.

That the film features ample sex and violence is not of itself surprising, given it is an Emanuelle movie and that such is typical fare for Gemser even in her non-Emanuelle flicks; however, the inclusion of a young minor girl—whatever her specific age—in such a film and including several nude scenes and particularly the rape scene raises some questions, though not one you might expect.

For those wondering about the legal aspect, I’ll point out that the film was shown theatrically in a wide number of countries in the ’80s, including the U.S.—for instance at the Budco Midtown Theatre 2 in Philadelphia in 1982, now the Philadelphia Film Center —then made the jump to VHS and eventually DVD, often uncut. It’s still widely available to view for free on the internet, a link of good-resolution and a complete version. An uncut, English-language DVD was released in the U.S. in 2005 and sold on Amazon and other major outlets, and the film was shown as part of an Emanuelle film festival at Quad Cinema in New York in 2019. So potential concerns along those lines are groundless. Perhaps it can simply be chalked up to the fact that despite her appearance, with no birth certificate her age at the time of filming can’t be pinned down.

As to the director’s thinking in casting Livia for the role, it can’t be known for certain as he doesn’t do interviews about his work, but we can speculate based on what else was being released at the time. During the late ’70s and early ’80s a number of controversial films featuring minor girls were made, such as Immorality Little Lips  and Pretty Baby—with the aforementioned titles debuting before Emanuelle Queen of Sados was filmed. Since the director has, to my knowledge, never before or since cast such a young actress in one of his erotic films, he may have simply been trying to imitate certain elements (i.e. youthful nudity) from those movies in hopes of attracting audiences. Also, it’s rumored that Livia was suggested for the role by a relative working on the production, and after auditioning her perhaps the director felt she was too good to pass up. Plot-wise, it was not necessary to cast an actual minor for the role; he could have selected a young woman of age eighteen or so and stated her character’s age as a few years younger in the film. Possibly he felt using an actual minor would make the film seem more authentic, but we’ll likely never know.

In conclusion, while there are elements of the film that I would prefer to have seen done differently, I believe the film merits a look, to see the performances of Livia Russo and Vagelis Vartan as well as that of some of the other cast (while Mario as a character is despicable, Harris Stevens does play the role well). Despite some of the dark things that happen in the film, there are enough pleasant scenes to keep the film from being depressing. It’s a shame that neither Russo or Vartan appear to have done any other films.

¹Various dates of birth are cited online, giving August 11th as the month and day and listing 1966, 1965 or in one instance 1963 at the year, making her anywhere from twelve to fifteen at the time the film was shot (1979). While I can’t prove which, if any, of these are correct, suffice it to say I do have solid evidence that fifteen is probably the upper limit for how old she could have been. As for the character Livia is playing—also named Livia—no age is specified in the film, other than the fact that she’s too young to control her father’s fortune and requires a guardian.

²While the scene does end kind of ambiguously, with Livia and Mike appearing to either sit or lie down, this is the kind of film where if the characters did have sex it would definitely be shown. So I infer they did not, and believe the director intended the audience to understand that Livia remains chaste until a later scene, where that sex takes place is unequivocal—and unfortunate.

³Which I have omitted to avoid making this post too graphic, though to be clear, it’s just acting. Not even Gemser and Tinti, who were married in real life, actually had sex on screen. Nevertheless, some may find it uncomfortably realistic, as no body double is substituted for Livia, but it’s clearly her throughout. Plot-wise, the scene does follow from what was built up before, sad though it is. However, one could question whether it was necessary to film the scene quite so explicitly.

(NOTE TO COMMENTERS: While I appreciate comments on the post, I would prefer that they not focus on the rape scene. While it is perhaps understandable that people would want to comment on it, I would rather you did not unless you have something of significance to add beyond the obvious. There are other areas of the film to discuss.)

Random Images: AK von Malmborg

AK von Malmborg is a self-taught Swedish artist who paints mostly large scale oil paintings but has utilized sonic media such as symphony orchestra, electronic opera, performance and has three full-length albums.

I paint what I dream, sometimes I dream the whole image at once and sometimes in installments.

The artist’s process is reportedly highly intuitive and multi-sensory, an organic approach that often results in a “messy consequence”.

AK von Malmborg – Amor Fati (2015)

Magnus Weidemann

Magnus Weidemann was born in 1880 in Hamburg, Germany. As a young child he looked up to his older, artistically-inclined brother Theodor. Theodor died young and Magnus inherited his art supplies. By 1898, at age 18, Magnus began his career as a painter, mostly of watercolors. The latest Magnus Weidemann painting I could find is Storm Surf, painted in 1967. He was a painter for at least 69 years.

Mädchenakt mit Vergissmeinnicht (Naked Girl with Forget-Me-Nots) was painted in 1927. In searching for Weidemann’s paintings, I was unable to find many young nudes. Art sites devoted to Weidemann concentrate on his landscape paintings. A few landscapes have a nude adult woman in the painting. I found only two Weidemann paintings of girls, both on auction sites. Mädchenakt mit Vergissmeinnicht was very small on the auction, but Pip provided a better example.

Magnus Weidemann – Mädchenakt mit Vergissmeinnicht (1927)

Some time around 1898 to 1900 Weidemann found his first nude model, who was also his cousin and would later become his first wife. Weidemann was married three times. The names of his second and third wives, but not his first, can be found in online biographies of Weidemann. It would be interesting to know how old the first Mrs. Weidemann was when she started modeling, but I could not find any more information about her.

Magnus Weidemann – Children on the Beach (1944)

Children on the Beach was found on a Czech auction site, and the title of the painting was in Czech. I have used the English translation of the Czech title. Children on the Beach was painted in 1944, during World War II. Weidemann complained during the war that it was prohibited to paint outdoors or to make any pictorial representation of the landscape. Presumably, Children on the Beach was not painted from life.

Painting was Weidemann’s passion, but did not pay well enough to support him and his wife. In 1900 he began studying Protestant theology, and in 1908 became the pastor of St. Clemen’s Church in Nebel, Nordfriesland, Germany. At the start of World War I Magnus Weidemann volunteered to serve as a medic in France. Later during the war, Magnus and his wife divorced. When Magnus returned to Nebel he made a studio in the rectory and hired a housekeeper. The housekeeper brought with her a twelve-year old foster daughter. Both the housekeeper and the child modeled for Weidemann.

Magnus Weidemann – Heidewanderin (1926)

Weidemann met Molli Mollenhauer, a twenty-year-old dancer and gymnast in 1919. She became Weidemann’s model, and in 1920 she married him. Magnus resigned as a pastor and moved to the nearby town of Siethwende. Magnus and Molli became involved in Freikörperkultur (FKK, nudism) which was gaining popularity at the time. Weidemann became friends with two other prominent artists: the photographer Lotte Herrlich and the symbolist illustrator Fidus (Hugo Höppener). In 1926 Weidemann moved to the German Island of Sylt, which was then and remains to the present a popular destination for naturists. He continued to live on Sylt for the rest of his life.

Magnus Weidemann – Gretchen (1926)

In the 1920s, Weidemann’s painting came to be eclipsed by his work in photography. His photography documented the FKK movement with images of people of all ages, mostly female. In 1923 he became editor of the nudist magazine Die Freude. Many of his photographs and poems appear in the magazine, and other German FKK magazines. He wrote the preface to Lotte Herrlich’s book Rolf, and wrote books of his own, including Körper und Tanz and Deutschen Baden.

Magnus Weidemann – Gisela (1926)

Heidewanderin (Heath Walker) is from the July 1926 edition of the German nudist magazine Lachendes Leben. Gretchen, the next photograph, is from the May 1926 edition of Lachendes Leben. Gisela is similar to Gretchen in that both are simple poses with the model looking down rather than at the camera. Gisela is from the April 1926 edition of Weidemann’s own magazine, Die Freude.

Magnus Weidemann – Glückliche Kindheit (1927)

These photographs are all from naturist publications available online at the FKK-Museum site, and are from the period of 1926 to 1930. Naturist magazines from the 1920s and 1930s in the FKK-Museum contain many artistically-posed photos, similar to poses in nude paintings. Publications of the 1950s and later have a greater proportion of casual photos, more like family snapshots than fine art paintings.

Magnus Weidemann – Blumen (1927)

Glückliche Kindheit (Happy Childhood) is also from Die Freude; this photo was published in the May 1927 edition. Although Weidemann concentrated on women and girls, he photographed some males as well, as in this photo. In his 1997 book Empire of Ecstasy, Karl Toepfer quotes Weidemann as saying he finds female subjects more suitable for nude photography because males are “active in contrast to the passive-intuitive character of women.”

Magnus Weidemann – Die G’schamige (1927)

Blumen (Flowers) is from the November 1927 issue of Lachendes Leben. Note the similarity of the pose to Gretchen and Gisela. The last two photos are from the book Deutschen Baden by the artist. Weidemann lived and worked on the North Sea coast of Germany, in the area where Frisian is spoken. Die G’schamige is translated from standard German (Hochdeutsch) as “The Shameful” , and from Frisian as “The Shy”. Struwwelpeter is a colloquial term for a child with messy hair.

Magnus Weidemann – Struwwelpeter (1930)

Molli Weidemann moved to Cologne to train as a dance teacher, and Magnus hired a housekeeper whom he married in 1932. He continued working as a painter and photographer until his death in 1967.

Maiden Voyages: September 2022

I usually feel guilty about not getting these ‘Maiden Voyages’ posted in a timely manner, but this time I’m glad I delayed because early this morning a podcast dropped that illustrates a concerning development near and dear to Pigtails’ history.

A.I. and Corporate Tyranny: In this story, a father noticed a rash on his toddler’s penis which seemed like more than the normal diaper rash. Contacting the pediatrician and being under lockdown, the doctor advised him to send a picture. Because it was a closeup of the boy’s penis, it triggered a hit in a routine Google AI algorithm which goes through a standard reporting process reaching law enforcement and triggering an investigation. The problem here is that even though the police exonerated the man, Google refused to reinstate his account and was recently informed him that the account would be completely deleted soon. Google seemed completely uninterested in explanations or the fact that he was completely exonerated by the police. This is especially tragic because this man saved a lot of personal material on the cloud which will be lost permanently if the account were deleted. That includes important family memories. As much as this was an inconvenience, it is remarkable that Google refused to change its position and reinstate the account or allow him to at least rescue his files. Also concerning is the fact that pediatricians (and other relevant specialists) are unaware of the risk they put their patients in when requesting these photos. (I personally have sent photos of my forehead to my dermatologist, for instance.) There are a lot of important twists and turns to this story that informs the experiences Pigtails has had in getting “cancelled” and how middle managers err on the side of conservatism so that the company won’t have to expend resources dealing with this fairly. Apple and Facebook also use automated AI algorithms generating thousands of reports, but so far such an extreme case has not come to light. I strongly urge readers to listen to this particular podcast episode because it says so much about abuse of corporate power, why we have had so much trouble keeping this site up and why we have to protect certain images from public scrutiny to stay online.

Refugees and the Human Condition: While we’re on the subject of podcasts, another one really struck me. The entire episode was about why people have personally sponsored refugees whether they were from Nazi Germany, war-torn Vietnam or Assad’s Syria. One of the concerns about taking in refugees is that they may exhibit so-called bad behavior and endanger society. What is not often taken into account is the trauma these people are experiencing and how much their behavior is motivated by survival instinct. One of the most heart-warming stories was about a little Syrian girl who kept wailing and seemed inconsolable. Even the parents didn’t know what to do. Finally, one of the volunteers decided to pick her up and just hold her as long as she needed. She finally calmed down and there was a strong bond between the man and the little girl for a long time after that. Even recalling the story, one could hear the emotion in the man’s voice even now. It is so disheartening to hear how in our dysfunctional society, few people have the instinct to simply comfort a child with touch: hold and perhaps gently stroking him/her. I have personally had to show new parents by example how to soothe their own children when putting them down for a nap! Indeed, we tend to expect the worst when we hear there is an interaction between a grown man and a vulnerable child. Yes, bad things do sometimes happen but the push for media sensationalism has conditioned most of us that this is much more common than it really is.

A Secluded Beauty: Pip sends me interesting leads from time to time. This one is about Walt Disney who brought fantasy and adventure to generations of children. It seems obvious that his grave might depict children in some way, but it is surprising—even to me, a self-proclaimed expert—that one is of a seated nude girl. Pip discovered it while reading an article about how people still visit his gravesite more than 50 years after his death.

Statue at Walt Disney’s Grave

Sublimated Sexuality? A lead from Christian reminded me of Pip’s series on ‘Sublimated Sexuality’. But sometimes the sexuality has more explicit elements. I have not decided if this artist should have a dedicated post at some point, but it is natural in the male and female psyche to explore these ideas and thus I share the work of Gea Philes. I find it hard to say if the work is truly transgressional or simply a frank exploration of sexual fantasy. Readers know when I use the word erotic or sexual, that I am not being provocative. It is a fact of life which children must figure out in their own way and necessarily has to be a part of what we examine on this site. Almost inevitably, artforms on this subject will have symbolic elements that help convey the attitude. There is also an article in French on this artist.

Video Archive: An associate offered this lead which is an archive of vintage videos. This discovery came in the wake of last month’s lead about a YouTube account focusing on children. The Prelinger Archives range all over the place as far as subject matter is concerned but I was told that quite a few do involve children and should be on Pigtails readers’ radar. Naturally, I would hope readers who discover important gems on this site let us know the specifics.

Josef Breitenbach

Josef Breitenbach was born in Munich in 1896. He attended a technical high school and later trained as a salesman and a bookkeeper. He participated in the 1918 Bavarian coup, and became acquainted with the Munich art community during the time he served in the short-lived revolutionary government. Although he had no formal training in photography, he took it up as a hobby in 1927. In either 1930 or 1932 (sources differ) Breitenbach opened a professional photography studio in Munich.

Josef Breitenbach – Girl Wearing a Hat (1930s)

Breitenbach was a successful photographer of both portraits and artistic, sometimes abstract compositions. Josef Breitenbach is best known for his use of Surrealism, but also employed Modernism and Pictorialism. Clients included celebrities as well as people not widely known. Girl Wearing a Hat is typical of his portraits during this period. Breitenbach did not give a title to this photograph, or to most others in this article. I composed captions for the first ten photos appearing in this article. The last four photos in this article, all taken in Asia, are captioned with titles given to them by Breitenbach.

Josef Breitenbach – Girls on Swings (1950s)

Political activities of Breitenbach and his son, as well as the fact that he was Jewish, made life in Munich difficult for him, so in 1933 he moved to Paris. Paris was the hub of Photo-Surrealism, and Breitenbach’s photos were exhibited with those of Man Ray, Brassaï, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Eli Lotar and Roger Parry. Artistic nude images, which Breitenbach began making in Munich, were also among his Paris photos.

Josef Breitenbach – Girl on a Swing (1950s)

In 1942 Breitenbach moved to New York City, and became a U.S. citizen in 1946. He continued his work as a photographer in America, and also taught photography in college. Breitenbach continued his nude photography in America, often at naturist resorts. Among the 2739 Breitenbach photos in the archive at the University of Arizona Center for Creative Photography are many nudes, nearly all of the nude photos are female, and almost half are photographs of young girls.

Josef Breitenbach – Standing Girl (1950s)

The University of Arizona archive contains duplicate or near duplicate prints of many photos. Sometimes, but not always, the hair style makes it possible to determine if a child photographed from the back is a boy or girl. Breitenbach took close up photos of female external genitals which I was surprised to find online in a public university collection, and which would not be suitable for Pigtails. Since Breitenbach photographed at least one adult model with a shaved pubis, it is not always possible to determine if the pubic close up photos are of a woman or a young girl. As best as I could ascertain, there are 485 nude photographs (including duplicate or near duplicate prints) in the University of Arizona collection. Approximately 96% have only female models, 2% have both male and female in the same photo, and 2% are male only. Of the nude females, approximately half are adult women, and half are children and adolescents. After viewing his photographs, it surprises me that Breitenbach has not inspired more controversy. Could it be that because Breitenbach was an established art photographer, recognized as such by respectable society and by the United Nations, he could get away with edgy work that would mean trouble for less famous photographers?

Josef Breitenbach – Standing Girl with Long Hair (1950s)

The first two nude photos in this article, Girls on Swings and Girl on a Swing, show naturist girls enjoying recreation. Girls on Swings appears to not be formally posed, but not a random snapshot either. Girl on a Swing is more typical of Breitenbach’s carefully-posed photos. The swing is just a prop for the standing girl.

Josef Breitenbach – Girl in a Forest (1950s) (1)

Josef Breitenbach – Girl in a Forest (1950s) (2)

Most of Breitenbach’s nudes are either standing or lying, with significantly fewer sitting poses. Standing models were photographed from the back about as often as from the front. Representative examples of front and rear poses are shown in Standing Girl and Standing Girl with Long Hair. Girl in a Forest (1) and (2) feature the same model, the same background, and almost the same pose. By coming in closer in Girl in a Forest (2), and aiming the camera upward at an angle, Breitenbach was able to obtain a different effect.

Josef Breitenbach – Girl Sleeping Outdoors (1950s)

Josef Breitenbach – Nude Girl Sleeping Indoors (1957)

Josef Breitenbach – Nude Girl Indoors (1957)

Girl Sleeping Outdoors is an example of Breitenbach’s images of lying nudes. Girl Sleeping Outdoors may actually be asleep, but it looks like she may be posed and only feigning sleep. Nude Girl Sleeping Indoors also appears to be intentionally posed. The same model is in the next photo, Nude Girl Indoors. These photos were left untitled by the photographer, but another photo of the same model apparently from the same session is titled New York.

Josef Breitenbach – Nikko (1960)

Josef Breitenbach – Taipei (1963)

During the 1960s Breitenbach went to Asia to do photographic reportage for the United Nations. The last four photos are all from Asia in the period of 1960 to 1967. All have been given titles by Breitenbach, and all but the first, Nikko, were given titles that tell where the photo was taken. Nikko was taken in Japan. Korea, Seoul is unusual for Breitenbach’s work because it is in color. Breitenbach took a monochromatic photograph of a different Korean girl who, like the girl in Korea, Seoul was bare below the waist on a public street.

Josef Breitenbach – Korea, Seoul (1963)

Josef Breitenbach – India, Orissa (near Konarak),Wall Painting Made by Women (1967)

Josef Breitenbach died in 1984 in New York City. Since his death there have been at least 26 one-person exhibitions of his work in America and Europe.