Tuesday, October 12, 2010

To Oscar With Love



Fans of Oscar Wilde have an odd way of showing their affection.  His gravestone is covered with lipstick kisses at Paris' Père Lachaise Cemetery.  Apparently the lipstick is causing deterioration of the marker and despite signage asking visitors to refrain, they can't seem to help themselves.  I just don't understand it at all.


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20 comments:

Shell Sherree said...

I don't understand it either, V {though it makes for a fashionable photo!} It looks like someone has even run their lipstick around inside the letters. Curious.

黄清华 Wong Ching Wah said...

Does make a wild mural..
I am too trying to figure out the design intentions.
Then again, what is art is art ! which may not need any explanations!
Wong

Half-heard in the Stillness said...

Morning Virginia, I guess they're just showing their appreciation in spite of the deterioration. Drawn to a special poet and writer who was persecuted for simply being who and what he was.

Jane

Les rêves d'une boulangère (Brittany) said...

That's terrible that it's causing it to deteriorate....but it sure looks fantastic at the moment! I love the colours of the different lips; as though people have done it on purpose. I really am fascinated by it.

Elizabeth said...

I wonder how many of those lips represent real appreciation and how many are "monkey see, monkey do". :-) It is prettier than the mess around Jim Morrison's grave! Many many years ago I made a gravestone rubbing (several actually) of Morrison's grave. It might be interesting to get one of Oscar's using red chalk.

Starman said...

I actually saw one of those lipstick impressions being applied one day.

M said...

Perhaps because he was jailed for his love affair? But I think this is proof positive of his belief that "Other people are quite dreadful. The only possible society is oneself" ...

Genie, how did we miss this???

Carla said...

HI Virginia, great to see this shots. Lots of lipstick!! Must be nice to know your are loved long after death. Carla

Bettina said...

I think it is true appreciation for a huge poet.
When I visited his grave, I didn't kiss it - I couldn't help but wonder - where has all these lips been ???

Genie -- Paris and Beyond said...

I understand that in general his gravestone, like those of many other public figures, has been defaced repeatedly. This is a great capture, Virgina, and it is interesting to see the oil marks of older kisses.

There is so much to see at Père Lachaise... that's why I go back almost every trip to Paris.

MadAboutParis said...

Wouldn't I just LOVE an apt overlooking ANY cemetery in Paris!!!

Daryl said...

I dont get it .. but then I dont get the Blarney Stone either .. or for that matter kissing any sort of rock, stone or concrete

vicki archer said...

Can't say I understand...but it looks pretty fabulous, xv.

Alexa said...

I understand it—but I wouldn't do it! Like Genie (and you too, I imagine), I keep going back to this amazing place, and always discover something new. Great shot, V!

Paris Paul said...

I don't know either, V. Isn't it queer?

Roses, Lace and Brocante said...

Weird - but amazing that Oscar still has that affect on women.
Sad that it's contributing to the decline of his monument - what does that tell us about the chemicals we apply to our lips????

Do come and see the card I've made for my French granddaughter!!!
Take care
Shane

Virginia said...

I've enjoyed the lively comments. I think this Oscar Mania is more of "they did it" I'm going to do it too, rather than any great affection these women have for him. The fact that anyone would would think writing, kissing or defacing a gravestone in any way is showing love or respect is as I said, beyond me. Some of you know that this is not the only part of his stone that has been "used" irreverently but I'm not going there. Thanks everyone for your comments and participating in the discussion today!

Harriet said...

Great photo. I love all the shades of red. (How appropriate that my WV is in red tonight.)

Harriet said...

I think that this could qualify as a Paris Rouge photo, n'est-ce pas?

TheChieftess said...

I wonder how many of those lips actually know who Oscar Wilde was???