ART UNDRESSED: FROM FLAWLESS TO THE FLAWED

ART UNDRESSED: FROM FLAWLESS TO THE FLAWED

A new kind of modern nudity

by Ellie Howard

The classical nude has been shoved off her perch. No longer do we look to the womanly hips of gleaming marble as the epitome of feminine beauty – instead, gallery walls are adorned with saggy bits, wonky tits and pubic hairs. The nude has undergone extensive surgery, transforming the flawless into the flawed.

Trends in art have come and gone, but the nude has always remained – artists have projected the contradictions and issues of their era onto the human body. The history of the nude is a colourful one; that has traced how we define, represent and view ourselves. From the youthful naivety of Ryan McGinley’s playful, ungainly bodies; the tender, introspective self portraits of Shen Wei; the hyper sexualised, pixelated pornography of Thomas Ruff to the provocative empowered ‘8 Women’ of Collier Schorr’s photography, the nude has been revealed, reinterpreted and recreated in numerable shapes.

We take a look, in images, at the expanding waistlines and increasingly provocative behaviour of modern day nudity:

Lisa Yuskavage: Pie Face, 2008

Lisa Yuskavage: Pie Face, 2008

ryan_murphey_text_images_600_modern_day_nude_contemporary_photography_kids_of_dada

Ryan McGinley: Ann (Windy Truck), 2007

ThomasRuff_600_kidsofdada_modernnude_articlepsd

Thomas Ruff: Detail of Nudes dr02, 2011. © 2012 Thomas Ruff, Courtesy Gagosian Gallery

text_images_600_john_currin_painting_modern_day_nude_contemporary_kids_of_dada

John Currin: Three Friends,1998

Collier Schorr_600_kidsofdada_modern nude_article

Right: Collier Schorr: Where Are You Going? 2013, Courtesy of Collier Schorr and 303 Gallery, New York Left: Danish model Freja Beha Erichsen captured by Collier Schorr for Document Journal #4

AnetaBartos_Feed_600_article_modernnude_kidsofdada

Aneta Bartos: Detail of Feed, 2010

AleahChapin_text_images_600_modernnude_painting_kidsofdada_contemporary

Aleah Chapin: Detail of It was the sound of their feet, 2014

 

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