Alain Jacquet
French, 1939-2008

Oil on canvas
90 3/4 x 55 1/2 inches

Between 1962 and 1964, Alain Jacquet created his Camouflage series, to which Camouflage Botticelli (Birth of Venus), 1963–64, belongs. For this piece Jacquet reproduced Sandro Botticelli’s important Renaissance painting(1) of a curvaceous, nude Venus with flowing golden hair, posed on a floating cockle shell, and he overlaid it on a gas pump that bears the word “Shell,” complete with the oil corporation’s scallop-shaped logo. Jacquet makes a humorous connection between Venus—the shell being one of her attributes, according to Roman mythology—and the corporate...

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