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Laura Stevens
24 January, I

2017

About the Item

Archival pigment print Signed and numbered on label, verso 12 x 18 inches (Edition of 10) 24 x 35.5 inches (Edition of 8) From the series, "Him" This artwork is offered by ClampArt, located in New York City. Laura Stevens writes: “Over the course of one year I invited over fifty men to my home to be photographed naked. Most were strangers, and it would be the first time we met. Stripping my bed to a white sheet, my most intimate space became a site for the man to be at his most intimate. An area with defined boundaries to move within, into which I would look, and he would be looked at. “Being a woman, at the age of forty, contemplating the naked male body feels curiously problematic. With representations of the male nude predominantly made by male artists, there is a lack of imagery exploring a female sensual response to male beauty. Regardless of the advances made in recognising women’s capacity for and right to visual pleasure, the historically dominant male gaze prevails. “Pursuing a way of looking at and portraying man, I questioned the clichéd symbols of a ‘hard’ and ‘active’ masculinity which deny vulnerability or the supposed feminine qualities of ‘soft’ and ‘passive’. “Allowing oneself to be the object of another’s gaze requires yielding one’s control and allowing for a revealing to occur, both physically and emotionally. To be naked-as-an-object – to become a nude – furthers this uncovering. In photographing this series of men I was entrusted with this exposure. “Within this encounter, between him and me, what would I see?” Laura Stevens received her BA from Leeds Metropolitan University before furthering her studies at the University of Brighton where she received a Master’s in Photography in 2007. Stevens’ series of narrative portraits often represent and fictionalize personal situations. The domestic landscape serves as a backdrop, as Stevens employs cinematic drama and painterly aesthetics to illustrate themes of intimacy, relationships, and loss.
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