When Is Nudity Art or Porn
From all of history to date, the human body has been one of the principal subjects in any art form. Ergo, to portray the nakedness of the human body expressed in an art medium does not necessarily mean it is pornography. After all, weren’t we all born naked? Do you feel anything pornographic about that?
I personally have yet to hear an Art Curator or Museum Tour Guide in the hallways of any Museum of Art to explain the paintings of Gauguin, Rembrandt, Vecellio or Reni as pornographic material. And all these masters depicted nudity in their art. When did the depiction of nakedness move into the state of obscenity and moral ineptitude?
Where do you draw the line between art and pornography or porn? PORN after all is defined as the representation or portrayal of explicit sexual subject matter for the purposes of sexual excitement or stimulation and erotic satisfaction.
If that is the case, what makes a 21st century black and white photograph of a woman depicted in silhouettes of lights and shadows a form of porn? Why would people classify the work of Rene’ de Haan, John Carmichael or even Christopher John Ball as erotic and porn? Is it because the medium has progressed to photography from oil and canvas?
I am not totally getting the argument. Who started this anal and morally upright revolution to label an expression of art as explicit sexual material? I don’t remember my paren
ts telling me that I should not look at Michelangelo’s David because this might stir certain sexual feelings in me when I saw it and I was 8 years old. Is it because of technology and the internet? Is it because some wise guy in Wikipedia illustrated pornography as: (I quote)
Pornography may use any of a variety of media, ranging from books, magazines, postcards, photos, sculpture, drawing, painting,animation, sound recording, film, video, or video game. However, when sexual acts are performed for a live audience, by definition, it is not pornography, as the term applies to the depiction of the act, rather than the act itself. Thus, portrayals such as sex shows and striptease are not classified as pornography.
Un-freaking-believable! Go watch a live Sex Act, its not really porn, because it is not a “depiction”, it is totally real!!!
I find it absolutely ironic, all this fuss about exposing the children to nudity and sexual materials. Is it the child’s fault if the internet access liberally welcomes him into gazillions of information that crosses from art to porn, particularly in these times when we, (categorized as mature adults), have become so warped and pretentious because of the conflicting signals society, the government and even the Church gives us? We can’t even tell the difference.
I just want to get real here. Nakedness is not an abomination. It is not supposed to defy any principle of nature. To create an environment where a child flinches at his naked body is more criminal to me than to educate him about being comfortable in his skin. Clothing your nakedness is a societal norm, and we comply. Photographs of half-naked women breastfeeding their children in some third world country does not make it porn. Does it?
The depiction of the beauty of the female anatomy in a painting, a book, or a photograph, or in any other media of art, is not porn. I would like to believe that the woman’s anatomy is naturally designed with the curves, not just for aesthetic reasons, and if it is captured in art, how can I consider that an explicit come-on? And just because during the Renaissance, the acceptable woman form was Reuben-esque, does not make the 21st century woman who is toned and shapely, photographed or sketched, to be any less art.
Listen, if you have children and kids, and parenting on art, sex, nudity and porn, is a challenge; perhaps you need to go work on your own mindset first. If you are not a parent yet, go deal with your own fixations, before even thinking of becoming a parent. If you can’t even be honest and coherent with how you think and feel about all these concepts, what gives you the moral ascendancy to educate and explain these gray areas to the children?
The line between art and porn is both unintelligible and questionable. I prefer to trust my own belief and value systems that I attribute to my upbringing, education and experience. Whilst what I embrace may not be perfect or right for everyone, I just know that there are very few certainties in life besides death and taxes. I was born naked. And so was everybody else. Nudity, porn, and all of these will never go away. I might as well learn to deal with their realities. To begin with, it is appreciation of ART that distinguishes man from animals; who gave the right to anyone to eliminate that distinction?
I have always been biased to Impressionism. And I leave you with quotes from two famous painters of this art movement.
“Art is not what you see, but what you make others see.” Edgar Degas