Posts Tagged ‘Nudes’

Vice Photo Annual Review

So, I’ve been stewing over this Vice photo annual for a week or so. Not quite sure what to write. I was slightly disappointed to see the number of hyper-masculine images that graced the pages. I felt like there were an overwhelming number of McGinley nude hipster (no offense to McGinley’s beautiful work), meets American Apparel girls, meets the NRA.  One exception that I really appreciated was the Mary Ellen Mark interview. Her work has always intrigued me. Her photo essays are poignant and full of emotion. Vice focused on Streetwise, her photos of homeless kids in Seattle, but I’m partial to her images from Ward 81. We are famous in Oregon for Ken Kesey’s book ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO’S NEST and it’s portrayal of the Oregon State Asylum. In 1975, Mark was assigned by a magazine to do a story on the making of ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO’S NEST, shot on location at the Oregon State Hospital, a mental institution. While there, she met, briefly, the women of Ward 81. She later made them the subjects of her 1979 book Ward 81, where she lived and documented female patients. The work is disturbing, moving and haunting.  

Herb Ritz

Herb Ritz

Herb Ritts is dead.
I stared across the table at Dona and I scrambled through my head to remember where and if I had even heard that. My first reaction was “No Way”. The 90s was filled with his imagery and I never remember him being an old guy per say. Tragically in 2002 on Dec 26th he passed on.

The conversation was about classy sexy imagery. Nude photography as an art form and differentiating plastic boobs and low budget porn was critical to the thinking. This brainstorm about photographers and their unique approaches to the subject lead to Herb’s “Wicked Game” video with Helena Christensen. He had clean lines and was able to keep the subject strong in all the work he presented. The film and the camera nor any technical wizardry was Herb’s signature to the work. You could feel that all his subjects were somehow emotional connected to Herb and in this creation process a trust was built. This sincerity became part of the strong lines and clean lighting to be a signature.

The memory of his work today was a testament to the work he created, His untimely death in many ways has immortalized the work.