Matisse and the Slowpoke


Do you see the animal in the above painting?  It is a work of the 20th century French artist Henri Matisse. At the end of his life,  due to disease, Matisse was unable to paint in the traditional sense. So, according to Sister Wendy  Beckett, he had his assistants color paper as he directed.  Out of which he cut and formed pictures, like the one above.  "Most astonishing," Sister Wendy calls it. "Every piece precisely placed to give an impression of circularity in motion."

So what did Matisse portray? Have you (no pun intended) figured it out?   Its name is given to a rhyming slow way  of corresponding.  In Christian lore, it was a symbol of the deadly sin of sloth. But to the Aztecs it was a symbol of rebirth. In scientific taxonomy, it is a gastropod. In Indonesia, its eggs are a delicacy, like caviar.

The French call it escargot.  Each one is an hermaphrodite, meaning that  it produces sperm as well as  egg, and hence can fertilize itself.

And everywhere it goes, it leaves a trail of slime. Do you see it in the picture?

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  • I thought it was a lion's mouth.

    Also I forgot who said "I sent back my escargot because there was a snail in it."

  • Male or female?

  • More colorful so male,
    unless you were referring to the snail.

  • In reply to jack:

    The snail, that symbol of sloth,
    Is both.

  • No, the sloth
    is the symbol of sloth.

  • In reply to jack:

    According to what I read, it's not really lazy, just slow-moving, with everytthing.

  • In reply to Aquinas wired:

    So it is misnamed?

    No one accused the snail of being lazy, either, just slow as a snail.

  • Speaking of escargot, you might like today's Wizard of Id.

  • In reply to jack:

    Loved it. Thanks for sharing.

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