They're Naked, and Not Going to Take It Anymore
Paris' nude life models strike—in the buff—to demand better pay
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 16, 2008 8:29 AM CST

(Newser) – Paris is notorious for constant protests by striking workers, but yesterday the French capital witnessed an uncommon work action: dozens of nude life models who braved freezing temperatures—naked—to demand a pay increase. As the Guardian reports, the models took to the street and re-created Delacroix's Liberty Leading the People, while artists and students sat sketching them in support.

The models took action after Paris city hall banned life models from accepting tips after posing for art students—a necessary lifeline for a model on minimum wage and with little job security. But the demonstrators also wanted to show that life modeling was a legitimate career choice, not just for starving students. Even the government had to admit the protest was effective: as one official said, "Taking your clothes off outside 10 days before Christmas shows real conviction."