L’Empereur En Marche!

On the eve of the second round of French presidential elections:

 

While some people consult the polls,

 

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and point to the ever-growing disparities between rich and poor and the resulting anguish and disorder,

 

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Oedipus and the Sphinx and details, oil on canvas.  Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, 1780-1867, French.  Walters Museum of Art, Baltimore, Maryland

 

 

And the usual cacophony in the media is passing for important information

 

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Land of the Stupid, 2001, acrylic on canvas.  Nancy Chunn, American, born 1941.  Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine , Philadelphia

 

And there is talk of dangerous levels of abstention and people escaping to Unreality TV, naked celebrities and mood-altering substances to get away from election choices which they believe to be unpalatable

 

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Odalisque with Slave and details, 1842, oil on canvas.  Jean-Auguste- Dominique Ingres, 1780-1867, French.  Walters Art Museum, Baltimore, Maryland

 

And while some are worried about the consequences for themselves and for theirs,

 

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African Venus, 1851, bronze and gold.  Charles-Henri-Joseph Cordier, 1827-1905, French.  Walters Museum of Art, Baltimore, Maryland

 

And everyone, claiming to be ‘true children of the Republic’ sing the Marsellaise forcefully

 

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The Marsellaise, c. 1918, oil on canvas.  A.B. Carles,  1882-1952, American.  Philadelphia Museum of Art

 

the emperor,

now recast as ‘ l’enfant roi’ for this, the 21st ‘democratic’ century,

declaring himself to be ‘En marche!’

marches on in the hope that the power will be his:

 

 

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Napoleon, oil on panel, 1862.  Jean Louis Meissonier, 1815-1891, French.  Walters Art Museum, Baltimore, Maryland

 

 

 

 

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