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Displaying pictures of a naked child in an art exhibition - what does everybody think?

(35 Posts)
emkana Tue 09-Mar-04 17:29:08

The story is here

I can see where the artist is coming from, but I wouldn't want anybody but close family to see pictures of my naked child. I just think it's private, no matter her age. I don't understand why she couldn't approach it differently - e.g. photograph the child in a white garment every time, to make it less controversial.

Anyway, would love to hear people's opinions on this!

emkana Tue 09-Mar-04 17:30:31

\link \here's the link{}

emkana Tue 09-Mar-04 17:31:44

grrrr... didn't work...

/link\Try again{}

emkana Tue 09-Mar-04 17:32:07

Ok, I give up. Just cut and paste please!

collision Tue 09-Mar-04 17:35:28

I sgree with you. Havent read it but I objected to a photo of a 3yr old girl who was naked apart from a fig leaf.....she was in the main window of the photographers and I just thought that the way she posed and looked was very sexual. It was there for ages and I was quite offended by it. Fortunately they closed down a few weeks ago!!!

crystaltips Tue 09-Mar-04 17:35:47

here we are try this

emkana Tue 09-Mar-04 17:36:46


Hulababy Tue 09-Mar-04 17:39:57

I wouldn't want naked pictures of my daughter looked at by anyone outside the immediate family. I acutually don't think we have any - maybe some in the bath but generally partially covered anyway.

I would be concerned of what/who may be seeing them and in what context.

Angeliz Tue 09-Mar-04 17:43:17

Have skimmed the article.
I agree with the woman from Barnados, (i think it was her), it's not all about abusers it's about the privacy of the child! I couldn't find how old the girl is??! I'm sure she might feel differently in a few years!
I would not allow naked pics of my dd to be seen outside my family !

monkeygirl Tue 09-Mar-04 17:46:13

Part of me wants to be liberal about this because you do see naked kids running round on the beach/by swimming pools/in the park when it's warm all the time, but there is a large part of me which thinks it is inevitable that these images will end up being used by peodophiles which does truly distress me. So I do think that pictures of naked children should never be used in any public exhibitions.

Angeliz Tue 09-Mar-04 17:49:13

Also, the mum says," i haven't asked her what she thinks",. Why?

coppertop Tue 09-Mar-04 17:53:31

I wonder if the mother has ever had an art exhibition containing photos of herself in the nude. Somehow I doubt it. As someone said, I don't think a child of that age is capable of giving their informed consent.

I may sound like a prude but I certainly wouldn't want my boys being on display like that. I would also be mortified if I discovered that someone had done that to me as a child.

sb34 Tue 09-Mar-04 18:09:08

Message withdrawn

AussieSim Tue 09-Mar-04 18:47:05

I can't help thinking that that little girl one day is going to blame her mother and having her photo taken in the nude twice per day for over a year for all her problems (drugs, early sex, bad marks in school, being unpopular etc etc). Your average parent doesn't do anything that intensive and yet still manages to get quite a bit of flack for decisions taken in childhood.

I was appalled the other day when I did a search on google regarding the health of my baby, and in the first page of results was a link to a porn site which contained baby photos - not that I clicked on it obviously, but it was evident from the google result.

I have taken my DS to a baby play group from when he was 6mths old where the babies are naked - it is supposed to aid in their developement etc. We were warned that if we take photos in the class to be careful of where we get them developed as people had had theirs stolen from one of those places where you just self-serve pick them up. It is just outrageous and completely unfathomable to me.

august24 Tue 09-Mar-04 19:09:00

fyi here is a link to her pictures:

I wanted to see the pictures before I judged the work, and I honestly can't say that I object to them. Obviously these are not all of them so it is hard to say. I just feel that we shouldn't be punishing the person who takes these photos, it is the person who finds them sexual that we should punish. I will stop here as I fear I will dig my self a very deep hole!!

Tinker Tue 09-Mar-04 19:17:05

I agree, it's not the nakedness that bothers me, it's the exploiting of her daughter for her 'art'. This kind of thing has been done before so it's not new or challenging. The 'artist' is either incredibly naive if she didn't think it would get this reaction or incredibly manipulative because she knew it would.

sb34 Tue 09-Mar-04 19:18:39

Message withdrawn

mummytojames Tue 09-Mar-04 19:21:22

i thought taking pictures of a naked child comes under the child pornography act because i was reading in the paper once about a bloke who faced inprisonment for taking a photo of his son naked when he was asked why he had taken the photo he explained that the boy had just got out of the bath he sat him on the floor while he pulled the plug and the boy stood up and took his first step so he ran and grabed the camera to take a photo of his sons first step (must admit i would do the same) but he was informed by the judge that this time he would give him the benifit of the doubt but next time he is to dress the child first because it comes under child pornography even though the photo was to be seen by o one but him and his wife so how come that comes under pornography and this comes under art

philippat Tue 09-Mar-04 20:09:56

The art curator in me just CAN'T resist this one...

Firstly, it is very important we don't all pander to the tabloid view of this. She is by no means taking nude pictures of her daughter every day. The vast majority of the photographs are clothed, although you wouldn't know it from most of the news reports.

I think the project is a joyous one - to record every day of your child's existance. Anyone with a small child knows to do this properly, some of those pictures are going to be naked. Right now, for example, my 2 and a half year old dd spends a good proportion of the day with no bottom half on, either on the potty or refusing to put pants back on. If I were truly recording her day, she'd be partly unclothed.

Whether she chooses to exhibit it and whether a gallery chooses to show the exhibition is another matter. I'm quite prepared to see both sides of the argument here, although I am deeply saddened that our culture is so sexualised and scared of a tiny minority that nude photography is becoming a no-no. Interestingly, in my experience, male nudes are almost as contraversial.

But I am truly shocked at the gallery's actions, having chosen to put on this show, to later pull it and report the artist to the police. Incredibly unprofessional not to anticipate and mitigate the problem, and then to turn against the artist they are working with.

Hulababy Tue 09-Mar-04 20:16:08

Having seen some of the photos I agree that the pictures themselves are fine. Personally however I would still not put naked photos of my child any where public.

SofiaAmes Tue 09-Mar-04 20:53:16

philippat, the article that I read said that the gallery brought some pornography specialist (or somesuch) from the police to consult before the show opened to make sure that it wouldn't considered pornography and if I remember correctly they gave her the all ok. Personally it smacks a little of the gallery doing it for publicity. I seem to remember a similar fuss with a female photographer in the usa in the mid 80's who took lots of photographs of her children naked (I think they all went naked around the house or some such commune type thing) and there was a big uproar about her. She sold lots of photos as a result as became quite successful (can't remember her name).
Have to say, in this case, I actually thought the photos were pretty rubbish from an artistic point of view...there is much better photography happening out there right now. It didn't really seem pornographic (no worse than the current crop of underage popstars in their skimpy tittillating clothing). But I wouldn't make public nude photos of my children as a courtesy to them and a sense of privacy.

philippat Tue 09-Mar-04 20:57:24

totally agree about the art - what a shame that's not the topic under discussion in the media!

Paula71 Tue 09-Mar-04 21:26:17

I agree with the viewpoint that takes the side of the child. What about her privacy and dignity?

Fair enough if the pictures had some artistic quality but they are very poor in composition and in all of them the little girl looks very uncomfortable. I have nude pictures of ds twins (now aged 2) but these are funny or cute not standing rigid against a tatty wall or door - lots of running about after or before bathtime. I think if we make our children ashamed of their nudity then it plays into the hands of paedophiles who want a child to keep a "secret". This could have been a perfect opportunity for discussion on this but as the photos aren't that good it misses the point.

Of course this is giving the artist more recognition than she deserves.

Angeliz Tue 09-Mar-04 21:26:59

I too didn't like the one of her in handcuffs, also, she does not look happy in ANY! I have tonnes of pics of my dd and in lots she is natural and not smilimg, but at least looking happy!
I think it's not good at all and where i love the pic of her sitting on the chair as i see my dd in that too, a pervert would see something very different. I think she's using her child and that's sad!

FairyMum Wed 10-Mar-04 08:23:00

I I think it's very sad if we can not show art/photos of naked children. I remember the American artist who photographed her children naked years ago and there was a huge debate. I thought those photos were really beautiful. I think if we don't want to see children's nakedness, we are in danger of taking their innocence away even more. I personally think it's much worse when you see very young girls dressing up like Britney Spears in the High St. Not because I worry about peadofiles, but because I think children should be children!

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