GÉRÔME, Jean-Léon
(b. 1824, Vesoul, d. 1904, Paris)

Young Greeks at a Cockfight

Oil on canvas, 143 x 204 cm
Musée d'Orsay, Paris

This picture shows a girl and a boy, both naked, watching a cockfight. It is set under a Mediterranean sky with a view of the sea in the background. There are obvious parallels between the animals and the human figures, indicating that the cockfight is intended to symbolize the interaction between the two sexes.

Gérôme, who specialised in Greek themes, later painted another version of this subject. Due to the success of the painting there are several copies in existence.