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Thread: Nude

  1. #51
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    Re: Nude

    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Sims View Post
    Frank, How does your work blow a hole in anything? That's like saying, "I like how my gritty urban landscape work really blows a hole in that happy bullshit about the art and beauty of natural landscapes."
    If we think we objectify landscape excessively, then we are really missing how much we objectify nude subjects. Harry's photos are beautiful, but who are they? They could have been photos of a marble statue (a nicely done marble statue, I will admit).

    Gritty urban scenes are not the proper analog. More appropriate would be beautiful natural scenes that still force you to reckon with some dominating force unconcerned with your well-being, rather than passively receiving the beauty without that sense of directed aggressive personality. And Frank's nudes do it without the dominatrix cliche, which is to me less compellingly disturbing and more just goofy. I find Frank's photos disturbing and also compelling.

    Rick "who studied life drawing in college but could never relate to the models as people" Denney

  2. #52

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    Re: Nude

    Brian. I don't necessarily think Frank blows a hole in anything, but if that's how he phrases it let him be. His work takes a different viewpoint to so much 'nude' photography.

    Essentially there's "the nude" and there's everything else. "the nude" is a concept artists or would-be artists use to disguise an image of nudity because secretly they are aroused by the body but hide it behind a veil of intellect. I quite like a lot of "nude photography" or "art nude" mainly because I enjoy looking at the human form, potentially it may arouse me. As it would anyone else, whether they admit it or no.

    The "everything else" would encompass work as far spread as Nan Goldin's, Sally Mann's, Larry Clark's, to Frank's. Goldin was surrounded by it, Mann exploited it in her family, Frank is more like Clark - taking what is already there, but making an image that you would want to look at.

    There's a book called "Pornography and the Law" initially published around 1958, edited and re-released in the 60's. The authors who are psychologists coin, outline, define, and provide examples of what they call "Erotic Realism". Basically, the everyday sexualised imagery, matter of fact.

    Larry Clark's images of kids mutual masturbating are considered 'art' by some, 'erotic realism' by others. If Frank published an image of his models petting or worse it is 'pornography' or 'obscene', regardless of whether it is contrived or documentary. That's the problem - his current published work is an editorial form of erotic realism - it borrows from matter of fact sources, but makes it nicer to look at.

    There's no way of comparing landscapes or architectural images to this kind of argument, unless you draw on semiotics and blatant phallic imagery, or metaphors.

  3. #53
    westernlens al olson's Avatar
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    Re: Nude

    This is Michele, photographed by Technika IV using Efke 820 IR.

    She told me the next day that she wanted workman's comp since she had sunburned her boobs. I told her that the next time I would apply the sunblock so that I could be sure it was done right.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails michele2008.jpg  
    al

  4. #54
    westernlens al olson's Avatar
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    Re: Nude

    Another one, Rafael. Technika IV on Portra 160 NC, cropped slightly.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails raphael2003.jpg  
    al

  5. #55

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    Re: Nude

    Ash, "Brian. I don't necessarily think Frank blows a hole in anything, but if that's how he phrases it let him be."

    I don't think Frank posts anything on this forum so that we will "let him be." I think Frank was trying to provoke a conversation. And I saw the thread dying out...so I thought I'd toss out a counterpoint. As I said in my earlier post, I admire Frank's work. If I lived in Rochester, I'd invite him over for scotch.

  6. #56
    Peter J. De Smidt's Avatar
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    Re: Nude

    But maybe a discussion would be better in a different thread?
    "There are no rules here - we're trying to accomplish something." - Thomas A. Edison
    www.peterdesmidt.com/blog

  7. #57

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    Re: Nude

    Geeze...I'm sorry. I thought this forum was for photographs and a discussion about photography. You guys crack me up sometimes...

  8. #58

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    Re: Nude

    Eh whatever, I just try to figure it out and rationalize it as I go along. I remember 6 or 7 years ago when I was totally against all of this, thought Jock Sturges was a criminal, etc. and now I am myself ;-) I think it's good to push yourself into uncomfortable territory, wether it's sex or politics or teaching.

    Or posting rather quick and off-the-cuff on a casual forum where I'm known for being a bit of an asshole and bullshitter (sometimes).

    But I still hold out the creepiest stuff is the photos of hot naked girls masquerading in a sort of a gauzy Maxfield Parrish guise to make it socially acceptable to hang in the living room.

    I.E. I wouldn't have a scotch with Robert Farber.

    But it would be pretty interesting to photograph Robert Farber.

  9. #59

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    Re: Nude

    The motivation behind a nude is precisely the same as the motivation behind pornography and all photography, sculpture, painting etc. To objectify.

    In the very long run only the aesthetic of the image matters. But great photographers use their craft as a form of self expression and to explore their boundaries. So in the end it is not always clear what is being objectivised. The emotional and aesthetic sensibility of the photographer, the thing in the picture, or the assumptions and preconceptions of the viewer.

    Although Frank was clearly a participant in the nudes he has presented, his approach seems very journalistic. Others seem to attempt purely to make a beautiful photograph. Many miss the mark, but good on you for trying.
    David

  10. #60
    joseph
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    Re: Nude

    Quote Originally Posted by mdm View Post
    The motivation behind a nude is precisely the same as the motivation behind pornography and all photography, sculpture, painting etc. To objectify.

    Is that really the case?

    While it might be true for the majority of pictures, I tend to see Frank's pictures as portraits that attempt to get get below the surface, to excavate-
    Perhaps I'm wrong, and Frank's motivation is simply to make a better object...
    Of course, the reaction will be different in different viewers-

    I'm not sure about the "etc.", it seems as if you're saying that the motivation for all art is to make objects? Or turn the subjects into objects?
    I'm not sure I understand, or agree-


    Although Frank was clearly a participant in the nudes he has presented, his approach seems very journalistic.
    Yes, but journalism of the Gonzo variety doesn't preclude participation ...

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