Daily Artwork — “The Slave Market, c. 1882”
Use the images posted in this feature for writing prompts, warm-up activities, drawing templates or as part of an artwork critique.
[This work] depicts a Ancient Roman slave auction. It shows the marketing of seven young people, ranging in age from children to young adults, as slaves. Both male slaves, as well as three of the female slaves, bear a similarity in appearance perhaps suggesting that they are members of a family forced into slavery by economic conditions. All are wearing tags to indicate their availability as slaves. The taller, standing, young woman is wearing a translucent garment which clearly shows her breasts and pubic hair–she is trying to shield her eyes, perhaps because her potential buyers include former friends and neighbors, who are probably seeing her nude for the first time. The auctioneer eats his lunch with a very casual attitude. (From Wikipaintings)
c. 1882 — The Slave Market. Oil on canvas. Orientalism style. Gustave Boulanger (1824-1888). Private Collection.