The stark contrast in the colours between the pale nude and black background highlights the reclining figure, focusing our attention on the brushstrokes and technique producing the varying contours of her curving form. The fluid effect of the thinned down oil paint allows the rich colours to spread smoothly across the canvas, giving an almost watercolour-like quality.
Forgetting past artistic traditions set by Old Masters, Cooke does not idealise his female nudes, painting directly from life. This work represents the modern emblem of the reclining nude, displaying a sexual and desirable energy that focuses on the physical form and consequently reinvents a theme that has been consistently practised over the history of art.
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