I think the thing with Weston's work (and this is just my opinion, of course) is that those nudes he did, back when he did them, were original. Or, maybe they weren't, but he was certainly the one who managed to make them synonymous with his name. Certainly now, when I see those female nudes sprawled out on sand-- or the spread-eagle big boulder/crevice nudes-- I always think of Weston. And once you start seeing innumerable photographers go off, year in year out, repeatedly and seriously attempting to photograph those same poses-- they lose their impact and, most certainly, their originality. They just start looking like parodies or caricatures of the real thing. That's the problem. Now I do think a series deliberately parodying these sorts of nudes would be great, though I'm sure somebody has done that already.|
On Nov 6, 2008, at 4:11 PM, BOB KISS wrote:
If (and that is a BIG if) Mortensen were right we can completely discount the figure studies of Edward Weston, Lucien Clergue, Helmut Newton, and…yes…even Sally Mann and many others whom we all regard as at least significant if not brilliant. Considering how camp and stylized Mortensen’s work was I think he was a case of someone in a glass house throwing stones. "'The best lack all conviction while the worst are full of passionate intensity' -- now you figure out where I am. -Lou Reed quoting Yeats Speaking of passion, I found a guide of nude composition faux pas(s) in my copy of Mortensen's "The Model" that one can find either funny because you've avoided these, or infuriating if your aesthetic is featured, because, like political perceptions, it all depends on where you're coming from. So go and shoot some nudes and don't break the rules! Haha! See, it all comes back to photography.
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