Only then, it kinda appears that Gauguin painted the women to be anatomically incorrect.
(The station did show viewers that Gauguin, in fact, had a better command of female anatomy, in its late local news, The Post’s Emily Yahr reports.)
And if you’re Allbritton-owned ABC affiliate WJLA, you go with the Bouncing Banner.
That is, you push up that banner of type that usually runs at the bottom of the screen, so it serves a dual purpose: conveying the salient point “Gauguin Painting Attacked,” while also modestly covering the native women’s breasts.
If you’re the Gannett-owned CBS station WUSA, you don’t show the painting at all in your promos, but you do let your viewers see the actual painting in your news coverage, by way of more clearly explaining the story to the audience.
And if you’re the NBC-owned WRC, you show a cropped version of the painting in your promos, so viewers only see the women from the shoulders up; but you let your viewers see the work of art, as Gauguin intended it, during your newscast.
What we appear to have here is yet another illustration of that old gag about how one man’s masterpiece is another man’s dubious taste.
“Two Tahitian Women,” valued at $80 million, sustained no damage in the attack. It’s the property of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in Manhattan, and it’s on loan as part of the National Gallery’s exhibit “Gauguin: Maker of Myth,” which opened in late February.
The painting, completed in 1899, depicts two women; one is bare-breasted, the other has a cloth draped over one breast.
TV stations are understandably very wary of women’s breasts ever since Janet Jackson showed us hers, by way of breaking up the monotony of CBS’s broadcast of Super Bowl XXXVIII in 2004.
Remember, it was the CBS stations that the Federal Communications Commission slapped with those hefty fines when the aging pop star experienced her wardrobe malfunction.
And it was NBC stations that stood to get socked in the wallet when organizers of the 2004 Athens Summer Olympics decided to expose the opening-ceremonies audience to classical Greek statues, and mythological gods and goddesses, in various states of undress so fashionable in days gone by. That inspired some to write nasty notes to the FCC, demanding to know whether it was going to let NBC subject the flower of American youth, watching at home, to such a wanton display of Greekness.
Non-fans of women’s breasts were very well represented among those who communicated with the FCC about that Olympics’ opening ceremonies, causing the FCC to ask NBC to turn over the tapes, sending chills down the spines of NBC station suits nationwide.