On the cover of the Spanish magazine de Fuera de Serie, Obama’s head is featured on the body of a naked woman, wrapped in the American flag with a headscarf sometimes associated with slaves, reports The Blaze.
Althea Legal-Miller for Clutch magazine wonders: “Perhaps because it seems so obviously offensive, the mind attempts to rationalize; ‘Did this get lost in translation, or is this as racist as I think?’”
The photo used as the basis for Fuera De Serie cover does depict a former French slave, but the image was interpreted as feminist and racially progressive.
“By choosing to use such a jarring image to tell the story of how America’s first lady “seduced the people of the United States” and “stole the heart of Barack Obama,” as Fuera de Serie describes her,” writes Brande Victorian of Madame Noire.
“It’s clear the magazine agrees with that mentality and wants to spread the message loud and clear: todavía estamos esclavos. We are still slaves.”
The “Portrait d’une négresse,” was completed by French artist Marie-Guillemine Benoist by the year 1800 — six years after the slavery abolition in France. Critics generally regard the painting as a show of support for feminism and black rights.
Art historian James Smalls explains that “the artist responded to early nineteenth-century French racialism and the less-than-desirable treatment of women,” concluding that “her painting may be seen as a voice of protest, however small, in the discourse over human bondage.”
As for the article itself, it reads about the first lady’s popularity and highlights how Michelle has helped President Obama lead American nation.
Here’s a roughly translated description of the article “Michelle Tataranieta De Esclava, Dueña De América” (Michelle, Granddaughter Of A Slave. Lady Of America):
“…(The phrase) Behind every great man there is a great woman describes the Obama marriage. In the shadow of the U.S. President is a person whose popularity ratings exceed those of Barack’s own. This person is none other than his wife Michelle.”
However, although the message of the painting was cleared as well as the subject of the article, some people are still calling the image offensive and racist.
The Frisky writes: “Plenty of absurd things are ‘artsy,’ like crafting Jesus on the cross out of elephant feces or giving birth inside an art gallery as a live action installation. But a drawing of Michelle Obama topless on the cover of Spain’s Magazine de Fuera de Serie is plain old tasteless.”
According to the website, the magazine cover’s artist, Karine Percheron-Daniels, is quite famous for his shocking portraits of other famous people, including President Obama and the Queen of England.
“With my art, and particularly with my’ famous nudes’ series I try to offer an alternative unexpected reality to allow the viewer to re-examine his unique subjective experience and general understanding and view the world and people in a different way,” she writes on her website.