‘These photographs aren’t sexual: they’re just human’


General Culture, General Photography

As mentioned earlier, the latest photographer to suffer from having a show shut down because of his photography of naked adolescents is Australian photographer Bill Henson. There is no single aspect of Bill’s case that is particularly new, but I personally find it somewhat frustrating (and, frankly, tiring) to see the same theme repeated over and over and over again, with the main problem being that there are no serious discussions about what is going on. Usually, there is some sort of investigation, and after that the conclusion is that there is no problem, and then we’re waiting for the next photographer to get harassed. Maybe this new article about the case can serve to illustrate some of the issues. Note how one of the big issues is actually mentioned by the first commenter whose assertion “The naked body is inevitably sexual in most contexts” points to the big underlying problem (which might explain why these kinds of scandals are way more common in some countries than in others).

Update (28 May): The whole controversy is creating quite the stir down under: At the time of this writing, there are more than 1,000 articles about the case to be found via Google.