Sunday, March 15, 2009



This Venus is dated to be about 24,000 years old but in fact she is ageless.

Standing only four and three eighths of an inch tall, (approximately the size of the image above) she is one of the most well known Venus statues. Found in 1908 in Willendof, Austria during the construction of the Wachau railway, Venus is a highly idealized portrayal of the female figure. Venus is carved from oolithic limestone and covered in an ochre wash.

With no visible face, her tiny arms are folded over her breasts. Her head is covered in circular, horizontal bands of plaited hair or a type of headdress. Her feet don't stand by themselves so it is speculated that she was made to be held. At that miniature size she would nestle comfortably in the palm of your hand.

With her head and eyes cast downwards it is thought that Venus may be looking down at her own body.

All of the Venus statues found share similar common characteristics which include:

a thin upper torso
greatly exaggerated breasts
large buttocks and thighs
a large belly - perhaps pregnant
oddly bent short legs that end with
disproportionately small feet.

If you are interested in learning more about Venus and the ice age period that she lived in I suggest that you go to this wonderfully informative site.

My information sourced from


  1. What an interesting little statue! I read the article about Obesity in the Paleolithic era and think too that this must have to do with fertility rather than a statue of an obese female. Odds are highly unlikely that any obesity occurred during that age. I lean toward pregnancy ... interestingly I found it to be very sexual even though nowadays we tend to think of lean & shapely as being a more sexually desirable figure.
    This was a great post! You come up with very interesting ideas & art objects.
    Lizzy :-)

  2. Hello from the future, to you Lizzy,

    Thanks for the encouragement. I find that I read something in the paper or come across an old photo, or my brain cross wires and comes up with a new hybrid idea, I don't think I'll ever run dry...

    Venus is very volutuous...

  3. Until today the Only venus known to me was: venus de Milo.

    I have a liking towards this statue you have shown Delwyn,she is so not perfect in the eye of the modern world today,her mysterious presence - I love her Ruben figure her humble posture -I wonder if she actually represent woman from the ice age ,my vision of these woman are more like worriers,hunters,lean and proud.
    Thank you for giving me some food for thought today....
    xxx mona

  4. Venus of Willendorf, I have a little statue of her in my house. I also have her body.


  5. Mona Hi on this glorious Sunday,

    Well I am glad that you now know 'Voluptuous Venus' and I agree she is very likeable. It makes you wonder about the way women must have been revered at that time...

  6. Rene, Hi to you. And I bet you haven't got a wrinkle either...

  7. I love her!
    Five kids would probably indicate that I should perhaps start a sideline business as her evil twin.xx

  8. When I saw the title of your post, I thought I was going to read about the planet Venus which is now the evening "star" shining brightly and prominently in the western sky after sunset. It's in retrograde meaning that it will get closer to the sun until it passes over to the other side when it will then appear to us in the early mornings before dawn as the morning "star."

    But your post is more alluring. I really like the image of Venus. It occurs to me that she could be both obese (wealthy) and pregnant (fertile).

  9. I could have posed for that in a previous life!

  10. Natalie, How's your day going?
    Time for the gym is it?

  11. Dan, Thank you for the added stellar informaton. I didn't need to do the Venus star post - I left it to you.

    I think you are right - she is the ideal woman in those times, healthy, fecund, pregnant and probably breast feeding...

  12. Sarah, I hope you are enjoying a lazy Sunday.

    The archetypal earthmother!

  13. A whole new perspective on Venus. Certainly not the one on the half-shell...would probably crush the shell. Venus in middle-age. Mostly I like it because it confirms my belief that beauty in the female form is not restricted to the Barbi look.

  14. BB, didn't you get up very early this am and now it must be 4.45am?????
    Do you ever sleep?

    No, our Venus can't even stand - shell or no shell, altho' she could probably float very well in a clam shell...

  15. Such a celebration of the divine feminine! You wouldn't see old Venus striding along a catwalk, would you? But she makes us all feel a little better about having a little extra padding.

  16. Meri, hi there,
    well covered we'd say...or as my beloved is fond of saying. "three axe handles across"

  17. Oh, yeah, we use that one too: three axe handles across the acre! All the women in my family are built a bit like Venus. I love this little statue. Such a true Earth Goddess.
    Perhaps the ancients had something right with their ideal of femininity.

  18. Hi Samantha

    New Zealanders and Australians have whole catalogues of colourful sayings...

    We have moved along way from Venus to Barbie as the idealized form!!!


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.