Mars Chastises Cupid

Mars Chastises Cupid (image obtained from and labeled for reuse.) 

People have not been, historically, completely repressed. The more I learn of human history, the less I believe in the “good old days”. That’s not to say it was all bad! Actually, the best parts of humanity seemed to be scattered over the centuries, as if they cannot coalesce into one place and time, all together.

Knyght and I recently had the opportunity to visit the Art Institute of Chicago. There was so much that we did not have time to see, but we certainly enjoyed the painting above, “Mars Chastising Cupid”. Indeed, I believe Knyght’s comments may have slightly burned the ears of the matronly lady beside us. If you are reading Terms of Derangement, I can only suppose you know in what directions my thoughts were running. And evidently, I’m not the only one.

Frankly, when I turned around and saw this gorgeously colored work of art on the wall, I was rather surprised to see it hung in public. It is large, at least five feet tall and three feet wide. The placard on the wall had some statement eluding to Mars pushing Cupid for making him have an affair with the woman in the painting. I had eyes only for Cupid and Mars, however. In person, the women in the left hand corner rather fades from sight, when compared to Cupid’s glowing skin and the raw energy of Mars.

So, my dear readers, I ask you, what do you see? If you go over it carefully, does Cupid look like he is being punished? Is he struggling? Do you see his hand, nearly relaxed in Mar’s grip? Does Mars actually appear that angered or is he enjoying himself?

I saw a piece of beautifully kinky homoerotic art.  What do you see? Do you agree with some viewers as quoted in the Chicago Tribune?

Out of all the old paintings, this was definitely my favorite of the day. And I do not apologize! Please share, if you have a favorite piece of old art that has been sanctified by time.

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3 Responses to Mars Chastises Cupid

  1. I am following your story – I just got caught up with it – and yes, I can see what direction your thoughts are going in in that. 🙂

    At first glance of the painting, I found it rather violent, but after reading your post, I can see how it’s open to other interpretations. It’s tough for me to say for certain because of the shadow on Mars’ face – I can’t tell if he’s angry or not. Cupid may not be struggling because he’s already been beaten into submission by this point (idk if gods turn red or bleed). Or maybe it is a whole a whole Fifty Shades of Grey sort of scene! I wish I could see it in person.

    • Ciara Darren says:

      I wish you could see it in person, as well. In the museum light, Mars was well lit and appeared less than angry, at least to me. Thank you for following the story! And as writers and imaginative people, isn’t it up to us if the gods bleed?

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