We can't resist passing on the old news that "Sex and the City" actress Kim Cattrall tossed off her clothes and posed nearly nude (above) to help the National Galleries of Scotland and England buy a Titian painting that will be at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts from Feb 5 - May 1.

The blond sex pot launched the caper in 2008 when the U.K. galleries needed 50 milllion pounds to keep the painting, "Diana and Actaeon," (below) which had been on loan to the National Galleries of Scotland since 1945. The picture's owner, the Duke of Sutherland, was threatening to sell the 1556 masterpiece and a companion picture, "Diana and Callisto," on the open market where the two were expected to fetch up to 150 million pounds, well over $200 million. 

Art lovers throughout  the U.K. pitched a fit at the thought that these beloved treasures might be "lost to the nation." Sensing a publicity bonanza, the BBC Two's The Culture Show had photographer Tom Hunter do a send-up of the painting in a contemporary setting. Cattrall enlisted a flock of beauties from a West End burlesque show and art students from the Courtauld Institute for a photo shoot in what appears to be a bordello, or maybe a proper gentlemen's club or aristocratic town house. Who knows? Get the full story from the Daily Mail

In Titian's original, Actaeon, a young hunter, stumbles into a woodland clearing where the goddess Diana and a beavy of gal pals are bathing. Shocked at being discovered in the buff, Diana punishes the young man by turning him into a stag who is then chased and torn apart by his own dogs. Fortunately only Actaeon's surprised encounter with the nudies made it into the painting, not that nasty bit about the dogs.

Cattrall's efforts apparently succeeded. The two galleries got the 50 million pounds for the Duke and will take turns showing the painting. Now they have until 2012 to raise another 50 million to buy "Diana and Callisto." Will Cattrall bare more? 

 

 

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