Nude protesters have become a fairly regular occurrence in recent months. But in France, people are now protesting by keeping their clothes on. French artists models are demanding state pensions, and refusing to disrobe until they are regarded in the same light as Renoir’s mistress, according to The Times:
Dozens staged a one-day stoppage in Paris, and said they may keep their clothes on again unless Aurélie Filippetti, the culture minister, opened negotiations over their status.They want the recognition afforded to the great 19th-century models, such as Lise Tréhot, Renoir’s muse, or Victorine Meurent, who posed for Manet.They also want to be classed as performance artists, and entitled to generous unemployment benefit between jobs, sick pay and state pensions.In a country which affords extensive rights to employees, nude models say they have been left behind. They are treated as casual workers, paid by the hour and given no sick leave. Indeed, they complain they have been placed in the same category as fashion models by French labour law, when they should be viewed as artists.
In these turbulent times, it’s heartening to know that France, at least, will never change.