From: Judy Seigel (email@example.com)
Date: 08/24/02-10:58:45 PM Z
On Fri, 23 Aug 2002, Eric S. Theise wrote:
> In the context of Hustler (or whatever... I'm thinking of *Airplane*
> where the section in the magazine rack is labeled "whacking material"),
> the pictures, already degraded in quality by being reproduced in a
> magazine, are going to be accompanied by text describing her ideal man,
> her turn-offs and turn-ons, and her career plans. Or, the whole thing
> is going to be accompanied by cliched (thanks Jack) stories about an
> erotic encounter with the milkman, postman, plumber, deliveryman, etc.
> The context seems to be much of the experience for the "crazed" viewer.
> I do not especially wish to be a defender, apologist, expert,
> or enthusiast when it comes to pornography. But I think it's
> bordering on the absurd to say that there's no difference between a
> Weston/Mapplethorpe/Bernhard nude and an image in a -- quoting Vonnegut --
> wide open beaver mag.
I can't address "Airplane," because I don't know what it is -- a movie?
As for the difference between the "art nude" and the beaver mag, you might
say it's one of degree. Like the difference between twins and octuplets.
However I would quarrel with equating Mapplethorpe & Weston --
Mapplethorpe was recording a scene of gay S&M, where the whole idea was to
be perverse & revolting, as in -- OK, I censor the titles of these
photographs as they're bound to draw protest. But they were so heavy that
his gallery at the time disowned them. Weston was posing or staging
"lyrical" or "romantic" portraits, that were not protested then or
My point was to address the Weston subtext, not to say there's no degree
of difference from hard core...Some of it borders on soft porn however, as
much naked lady photography does -- including Ruth Bernhard... Yuck... A
naked lady in a box??? Talk about obvious and subtext! In that company,
Weston really is a giant -- showing life and variety, even a charming
facial expression or two. Bernhard's naked in a box (a BOX, get it?) are a
bore & all the same.
I don't object by the way to honest porn, however raw & "wide open" -- if
it's not abusive. Why? Truth in labelling.
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