My images appropriate the female form as represented in the Renaissance and Baroque periods, specifically in sculpture and paintings. This concept is translated through the postmodern medium of digital photography and the use of studio lighting.
I have used chiaroscuro lighting which is a technique appropriated from Baroque paintings by artists such as Caravaggio and Rembrandt. The main reason I choose to light the body with this technique is to fill in and highlight muscle definition and form which recreates a Renaissance sculpture like appeal to the body.
Low key black and white photography is used to define and separate the form and shape of the body, creating emphasis on the female form.
The face of the figure in my photographs remains unseen. This explores lack of identity and represents how women are often depicted as a whole rather than individuals, especially throughout Renaissance and Baroque art.
I have chosen to represent form using different techniques in each of the photographs such as shaving cream, water and abstraction. The shaving cream was used as putty to physically sculpt the body and to ‘fill out’ the figure, playing on the concept of the ideal female figure depicted in the Renaissance period. The water droplets follow and accentuate form and the abstracted form accentuates curves and dissects parts of the body clearly relating to Renaissance artist Da Vinci’s Anatomy studies.
Renaissance art although concerned with likelihood, also had ideal forms shown through full, round nudes. Knowledge of anatomy and muscle structure was a must for renaissance sculptures and painters. This is depicted in my work throughout the various uses of lighting and other techniques to emphasise female form.
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