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Singapore women: Paint me nude

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SINGAPORE (CNN) -- Singapore, renowned for its conservative reputation, is embracing nudity -- well, at least on canvas.

The latest fashion trend in the wealthy city-state is nude painting, with Singaporean women paying up to S$30,000 (U.S. $17,000) to reveal all to an artist, Singapore's The Sunday Straits Times reported.

Would you consider commissioning a nude portrait of yourself?


The paintings, unlike a current exhibition of nude paintings in Singapore, are not for public consumption and mostly have been commissioned as a gift for a woman's spouse, Stephane Le Pelletier, manager of the Opera Gallery, told the paper.

"The people who ask for such portraits are usually more mature in their life experiences," Le Pelletier said.

"They know what they want and they are ready to see themselves nude in a painting."

Though the nude paintings have been popular with Singapore's Tai-Tais, even the not so well-off are shedding their clothes for art's sake.

Depending on the size of the painting and the artist, the subjects have been paying between $3,000 to $30,000.

"I have a secretary who wanted her nude portrait done to please her husband, but of course her budget is different to a Tai-Tai's," Le Pelletier was quoted as saying.

While some were choosing the more traditional "live" setting, most opted to provide a nude photo of themselves which is sent to the gallery's European-based artists.

The gallery manager added that 20 percent of his clients were "true blue" Singaporeans, while the rest were foreign women.

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