Unadorned: People in a Julia Fullerton-Batten’s project
43 years oldJulia Fullerton-Batten,
Has permanent collections in National Portrait Gallery (London) and Musee de I’Elysee (Lausanne), her works were exhibited in Spain, France, South Korea and Norway. In 2007 published a book called «Teenage Stories».
«Unadorned» is my reaction to modern day society’s preoccupation with super-slim bodies. The skinny ideals surround us in the form of sleek advertising of thin bodies and diets, presentation of air-brushed celebrity profiles, etc. In the Baroque period the fuller figure was much appreciated and represented by Old Master portraits. Reproducing these past portraits in a modern context presented an ideal contrast that reinforces my belief that we are living in a world of illusions as far as the human figure is concerned. It is the inner person that counts.
When people are happy within their body and with their life, they will show it. Larger than life people unashamedly shed their clothes and posed for me nude. This is how they accept their bodies as Nature intended for them. They are content as they are. Either their heritage or life’s path has given them curves and shapes, in many instances voluptuousness and sexiness, in other instances they have a devil-may-care attitude. In a world full of manipulated beauty, they at least show honesty, both to the world and, most especially to themselves.
The dictionary definition of «adorn» is to make an object more attractive by adding something beautiful to it. I have used the title «Unadorned» to express that there was no need to add anything to the bodies of my models – they were already beautiful.
“alt”: “Julia Fullerton-Batten photo Ava”,
“alt”: “Julia Fullerton-Batten photo Donna”,
“alt”: “Julia Fullerton-Batten photo Catherine”,
“alt”: “Julia Fullerton-Batten photo Jessica”,
“alt”: “Julia Fullerton-Batten photo Miriam”,
My team and I found the inexperienced, «street cast» models by advertising on the internet, and blogs on my website. In fact, models felt much more liberalisedonce they had stripped off and started to pose naked in front of me and my team. Most of them seemed to rejoice in this newly detected freedom. My models certainly enjoyed a shared vision – it means a lot to me in this particular instance.
I feel that there is something in my images that not only will appeal visually, but may provoke thoughts. It’s fine for me to be criticized. I want a viewer to engage himself with what I’m trying to impart in my images.
“alt”: “Julia Fullerton-Batten photo Rikkard”,
“alt”: “Julia Fullerton-Batten photo Sally”,
“alt”: “Julia Fullerton-Batten photo SimonFord”,
“alt”: “Julia Fullerton-Batten photo TonyHenry”,
“alt”: “Julia Fullerton-Batten photo Tristan”,
Each epoch has it’s own beauty standards. At the beginning of the 20th century the film industry dictated fashion and the ideas of feminine beauty. During the twenties the Vogue showed us women with boyish figures and bobbed hair-styles. In the fifties the spotlight moved onto more voluptuously shaped women a-la Marilyn Monroe and Sophia Loren. However in the mid-sixties the fashion and media industry took over and set a standard of the androgynous, super-thin, Twiggy-based ideal that still leads the field.
Beauty standards have always been the main factor governing people’s idea of thinness as an optimum body shape. The other is the propagation of the idea that being thin is the only way to be healthy. It’s quite ironic when one considers the illnesses, such as anorexia and bulimia, that many people inflict on themselves in order to achieve the goal of thinness. Modern-day society has a preoccupation with the outer appearance. I think the pace and transience of life are the main reasons of it: we just don’t have enough time to evaluate the inner qualities of a person with equal or greater merit of judging a person’s true self.
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