On the way to the exhibition hall, Gantsetseg was very excited about her picture and remembered how she had been ashamed to be naked the first time, but the need for money forced her to act so flagrantly. It is now funny to think how uncomfortable she felt with the 2000 tugrigs in her hand as she entered the artist’s meager house with its austere furniture. The artist’s chaotic style of living did not fit with his talent. At that time she didn’t realize that she would come to admire the artist’s talent and be captivated by a desire to be painted only by him. To see how her image was appearing on the paper with the skillful and agile motion of the artist was fascinating. He always said “ Gantsetseg, what I achieve in this exhibition will decide my future. Therefore this picture will play an important role. We must work to be successful”.

No one knows that she is working as a nude model. If her peers knew, they would gossip about her naked picture displayed in the exhibition. Maybe she would not be able to face anyone. The artist knows all about her, her skin, her wrinkles, palm line etc.

Being selfish about her modeling for him, he said: “You are my model. You cannot be painted by any anyone else, whatever they offer as reward to paint you. Your skin like silk, it is your most significant feature which I noticed when I first saw your body through your delicate blouse. I will not let you be painted by others. When painters see you, they will beg to paint you. Please be patient until the opening of the exhibition”. Gantsetseg was about to say: “Don’t worry. I will only be painted by you. I won’t be naked in front of any other person”.  When she was being painted for the first time she thought about the painter and what he was thinking, as he painted her as she was born, whether he wanted her. At first she wanted to be painted as quickly as possible, but later she became accustomed to it and did not mind how long it took.

She was captivated by the artist’s perceptive and inquiring look, his fascinating talk about brilliant painters, their famous paintings of beautiful ladies whose pretty faces and figures had been preserved thanks to the efforts of great painters. He showed the portraits of ladies of the time and explained how these paintings such as the ‘Mona Lisa’, ‘Venera’, ‘Pretty lady with the sable in her hand’ and ‘ Sixteen Nymphs’ had been created. How the famous artist Rubens had recorded the memory of his deceased wife by painting her. He later married a sixteen year old girl who adored his talent and Rubens painted her many times. If he hadn’t painted her, then humankind wouldn’t have known how beautiful Elena had been. All this talk seemed to Gantsetseg to be a myth.

Gantsetseg enjoyed the painting ‘Sixteen Nymphs’ very much. Every time she came to be painted, the door of a new world opened as she listened to the artist’s talk, as she thought about the young mother who loved her baby so much but was forced to send him to alien world, as described in the painting ‘Sixteen Nymphs’. Maybe this thought made Gantsetseg fall in love. She decided to tell him about it many times when being painted, but decided to put off telling him until the opening of the exhibition.

She entered the exhibition hall, the walls of which were full of paintings. The viewers were waiting for the opening and looking at the paintings. When Gantsetseg was looking around to find the artist and her painting, the picture “A Nude Model” appeared before her eyes. The young lady in the picture was her, but she didn’t recognize herself.

She was bathed in the light of the full moon as it streamed through the window on a spring night. She lay on a crimson red sofa with her head reclining, her half closed eyes immersed in thought. The young lady in the picture wanted a man who would take hold of her in his strong arms and let her to experience the happiness of physical love. Her look of loneliness invited a kiss, her lips begging, “Come to me, please come to me”.  The cool air shimmered in the moonlight around the naked young lady, a lady who rarely held her love. Gantsetseg couldn’t get the picture out of her mind. The thought that he loved her and knew that she loved him made her feel happy.

When the exhibition opened, it was announced that the picture “A Nude Model” had taken first place. Gantsetseg was very happy and decided to tell the artist about her love when he came to talk to her. But he artist didn’t look at her because there were many people to congratulate him. When Gantsetseg, with a bouquet in her hand, came to him slowly, he just looked at her and said, “Thank you very much. You are free now. You can be painted by others”.

Saying these words, he turned to the people who were congratulating him. With tears poured from her eyes the wonderful picture was washed away.




Далбаа тоологч

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