The naked body is one of the oldest and most fascinating motifs in art. Artists of past centuries felt bound by the conventions of ideal beauty in their representations of the unclothed body. In the 20th century, however, the traditional academic poses are becoming ever more relaxed and classic nudes are becoming naked bodies. In contemporary art and particularly in photography, the realistically portrayed body with its needs and desires has developed into a projection plane for the artistic idea. ((C/O Berlin presents for the first time publicly and especially for the guests of the Berlin art fairs in fall over 150 photographs from the Thomas Koerfer collection. Renowned artists including Nobuyoshi Araki, Nan Goldin, Robert Mapplethorpe and Cindy Sherman will provide a panorama of the naked body is discreet and pornographic, repelling and enticing.
On a Sunday morning I went with a friend to see an exhibition at the C/O In Berlin. My friend was pretty depressed, and the weather was really shit, so we decided to go out and see a show. As we walked in the main hall, the works of Nan Goldin hung there with their perfect presence in the space. It’s still so nice to be honestly touched and strongly hit by an artist. I feel it’s getting rarer this feeling you have confronting art works. This feeling that art still means something and can truly touch you, physically and mentally. I also started to wonder why so many people are depressed these days. I have to admit that almost all the people I know are in some kind of depression. Not only here in Berlin, but friends I know from Israel, France, Spain. There is this general feeling that something isn’t like it should be, but I guess this is for a different article.
I Sat there in front of Nan’s works and genuinely disconnected myself from the outside
space. I know this sound really romantic, but once in a long time I let myself be romantic. Christina was saying how she has the feeling that’s its like sea sand running through your hands. You want to grab something before it’s all gone. You want to grab these moments in life before the life itself is over. She confesses to me how when she was a little girl, she was suffering from back problems and couldn’t run with the other kids. She would sit next to the playground and take photos of the children playing. Later she would look at the photos and have the sensation of really playing with here friends. I can imagine the feeling Nan has while looking back at here friends, knowing that so many of them are not here anymore. All we have are these photos of these people in their own time and space.
I had totally fallen in love (maybe my problem is that I only fall in love with photos, but not with the people themselves), with one of the new works.
Merry Alpern, Window
I was shocked to discover that a gallery in London had taken down this new work by Nan Goldin of her nude niece, claiming it was to “pornographic” for the viewers. I would like to strongly say that the world it-self has become pornographic, or maybe reality doesn’t exist anymore at all. Only these honest and passionate images that Nan brings to us can bring back something “real” and genuine. I feel that this is the exact opposite to pornography but I guess the codes of this simulacrum offer a different point of view.
Nan I Love You.
Nobuyoshi Araki , Larry Clark , Nan Goldin , Robert Mapplethorpe , Terry Richardson , Bettina Rheims , Thomas Ruff , Cindy Sherman , Andy Warhol , Hellen van Meene , Andres Serrano , Daido Moriyama , Merry Alpern , Philip-Lorca di Corcia , Jean-Luc Moulène , Arno Nollen , Gabriel Orozco , Jack Pierson , Richard Prince , Miroslav Tichy , Piotr Uklanski , Joel Peter Witkin , Jim Goldberg , Katy Grannan , Noritoshi Hirakawa , Sarah Lucas , Sally Mann , Boris Mikhailov , Mike Kelley , Juergen Teller , Jeff Bark , Daniele Buetti , Jeff Burton , Walter Chappel , Gregory Crewdson , Pierre & Gilles , Christopher Nigel Phekoo
Ariel Reichman Lives and works in Berlin/Jerusalem. He was born in 1979.