The slimmed-down, 21st century versions of some of art’s most celebrated masterpieces, including Botticelli’s The Birth of Venus (1485), look positively skinny, even anorexic, compared to the originals.
While their bottoms went under the digital scalpel, Ms Giordano also enlarged the breasts – in keeping with today’s expectations of small hips and big chests.
“I was retouching some photographs from a shoot for a friend’s book and while I was playing with the skin tones and using corrective brush strokes, I was reflecting on society, social networks and the need to be accepted,” the artist, who lives between Milan and Naples, said on her website.
“Art is always in search of the perfect physical form – it has evolved through history, from the classical proportions of ancient Greece, to the prosperous beauty of the Renaissance, to the spindly look of models like Twiggy and the athletic look of our own time.”
The slimmed down Venuses prompted a vigorous debate on Italian social media networks and blogs, with some people calling the retouched images “horrendous” and musing on the ease with which fashion images can be manipulated digitally.