Tuesday, December 8, 2009



The depiction of the nude human body has been a constant in artistic expression since people, both male and female, began making representational marks on whatever surface lay at hand. For an artist, it is perhaps the single most personal but most obvious and natural subject to address. The difficulties of craft aside, it is also the most problematic.

Throughout history, the depiction of the nude human body, either male or female, by either a male or female artist has been met with the full gamut of response. From completely positive to utterly negative, depending on prevailing social attitudes at the time of presentation, this wild swinging of the pendulum of acceptance is understandable. After centuries of enforced modesty concerning one’s own body, it is a rare person who can view a work of figurative art without falling under the shadow of the issue of sexuality. Sadly, for most, the instinctive reaction is “naked means naughty”.

For me, the naked human form is far too natural to evoke anything but a positive reaction. It stands to reason. My body is as much a part of nature as a tree is. I look at trees and see my own limbs. I look at erosion on a cliff face and see the curves and folds of my own skin. My work as a photographic artist is an exploration of this similarity of form.

The opportunities are abundant to discover these “body parts”, both masculine and feminine. Perhaps my images may be misinterpreted as being sexual or erotic. They are, however, merely images of trees and flowers and dirt. They do serve to reinforce the often-ignored truth that we are of the natural world.

At the very least, I hope to allow the viewer to begin contemplation of the idea of the naturalness of the human body. This in turn may lead the viewer to set aside the false argument of modesty and be free to grapple with the deeper issues expressed in any work of figurative art.

I hope you enjoy these images. To view images of other subjects, check back soon for additions to this group of blogs. Thank You!  Jan Row