Models strip in near-freezing temperatures to demonstrate
outside the city's cultural affairs bureau in Paris to
protest a new municipal order sent in October to stop an
age-old practice of tipping those who pose nude. (AP
Paris City Hall wants to strip art school models of the
tips they receive from painters and sculptors - and the nude
models decided they weren't going to take that with their
About 15 models braved near-freezing temperatures to strip
outside the city's cultural affairs bureau to protest a new
municipal order that again bans the age-old practice of
tipping those who pose nude. The order affects about 100
City officials say the tips have long been illegal - it's
just that enforcement has lagged - and they pledged to
discuss ways of boosting the models' pay.
"The hourly pay is euro11 ($NZ27), or a little bit more than
a housekeeper earns," said Christophe Girard, cultural
adviser to Mayor Bertrand Delanoe.
The forebears of today's models were muses for artists like
Picasso, Modigliani, Courbet and Degas. But some students
today don't like having to shell out cash at every session.
And Girard said he and the mayor could be blamed for
unaccounted-for money changing hands at city-funded arts
Today's art models in Paris are mostly part-time - and some
are artists themselves. Those who work full-time say their
body shapes are unique.
Girard himself was an occasional nude model, some 25 years
ago at art school.
"It's always been forbidden, we just didn't know," he said of