The history of nude photography practically started with the invention of the genre itself. The artists used the camera to capture their fantasies, desires, and projections aside from the cannons of morality. Naturally, as the time changed, the nude photography gained its relevance and stopped being a manifestation of a forbidden act with shady protagonists. Today, the nudes are seen almost everywhere across the social media and the public and are being promoted and censored at the same time - which brings us to the question of what these images mean at all.
The upcoming group exhibition titled CORPUS DELICTI – 3 contemporary views on nude photography and staging the body which is about to open at Berlin-based The Ballery gallery will examine the subject of nude photography and staging the body in the contemporary moment. The selection will be focused on new photographic works by established and rising photographers Sonia Szóstak, Steven Kohlstock, and Simon Lohmeyer.
The exhibition will reflect on the contemporary reception of nude photography. The paradigm has changed so the youngsters are not shy to show themselves nude, and the digital space is suffocated with pornographic images.
Representing your body filtered, optimized and perfected in different ways is of high importance. In order to catch more likes, followers and in general high rate within a social network, the majority of the population forgot to break taboos; rather they are just replicating the same pattern.
Therefore, this exhibition tends to reveal an array of meanings behind the nude images; the contemporary photographers articulate their own perception of and stage the body, by addressing issues such as intimacy, gender, and sexuality.
Sonia Szóstak is a young Polish photographer focused on producing captivating fashion based images mostly centered around different aspects of female sensibility. In a similar manner, Berlin-based photographer Steven Kohlstock creates dashing images which salute male beauty, while German Simon Lohmeyer mostly produces self-portraits and depictions of couples.
All of them share one thing – an unquenchable desire to create aesthetically satisfying images, but with a dash of subversiveness. In order to underline the diversity of individual practices, the selection will include different photographic forms from Polaroids and mounted photographs, and photographic wallpaper to classically framed prints.
This particular exhibition should be perceived as an important contribution to the complex topic of nudity in the digital era. Three similar perspectives will be further discussed in the context of the tension behind the different aspects of contemporary representation of corporeality through body-inspired talks, presentations, and other events.
The Ballery is a distinct exhibition space functioning from 2014 and it represents a variety of contemporary artistic approaches in the dynamic format with a special focus on the communal diversity and equality policy.
Corpus Delicti - 3 contemporary views on nude photography and staging the body will be opened at The Ballery gallery in Berlin from 19 September until 21 October 2018.
Featured image: Sonia Szóstak - Laguna Colorada, 2017. Copyright Sonia Szóstak. All images courtesy Nadine Dinter.