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Author Topic: Art or Porn  (Read 4207 times)

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Offline ShrowdedPoet

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Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #25 on: September 22, 2009, 09:05:18 AM »
I find the human body to be interesting and even beautiful.  Taking close ups of certain parts of the body and grey scaling them makes for some really interesting impressions.  Straight up nudes are very beautiful also.  I find it disturbing that people seem to be disgusted by the human form in it's purest. 

Offline Trieste

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Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #26 on: September 22, 2009, 11:48:54 AM »
Looking at someone with "enough face and naval piercings to set off metal detectors 100 feet away" and then saying "there is no moderation with tattoos and piercings now" is like using GenCon as proof that cosplayers are mainstream now. It's a grossly exaggerated example that does not keep the overarching picture in perspective. Then again, I'm a fire-haired freak who "took the redhead schtick way too far" (something my brother's friend said when I first dyed my hair the completely unnatural red it is now).

It really, really does come down to taste, and the thing is that it's less worrying whether people distinguish someone with piercings and tattoos as a freak or not. No one has tried to shut down a gallery for showing pictures of facial piercings, and nobody has tried to prosecute an artist for putting up pictures of tattoos - unless they were of the human body.

In this way, the debate between "zomg freak or not" is not only off-topic (oops) but also irrelevant, because the art-or-porn debate has been raging for years as a legal battle, not just a battle over good taste.

Offline Raven41174

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #27 on: September 22, 2009, 12:00:06 PM »
Looking at someone with "enough face and naval piercings to set off metal detectors 100 feet away" and then saying "there is no moderation with tattoos and piercings now" is like using GenCon as proof that cosplayers are mainstream now. It's a grossly exaggerated example that does not keep the overarching picture in perspective. Then again, I'm a fire-haired freak who "took the redhead schtick way too far" (something my brother's friend said when I first dyed my hair the completely unnatural red it is now).

It really, really does come down to taste, and the thing is that it's less worrying whether people distinguish someone with piercings and tattoos as a freak or not. No one has tried to shut down a gallery for showing pictures of facial piercings, and nobody has tried to prosecute an artist for putting up pictures of tattoos - unless they were of the human body.

In this way, the debate between "zomg freak or not" is not only off-topic (oops) but also irrelevant, because the art-or-porn debate has been raging for years as a legal battle, not just a battle over good taste.


I have to agree, art or porn is always going to be in the eyes of the beholder

Offline The Overlord

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #28 on: September 22, 2009, 07:22:17 PM »

Well, again it does indeed come down to personal tastes.


I find Ďmainstreamí porn to be the same as popular media in general- Overdone, watered down, lowbrow and largely unimaginative.


That may be only my opinion here, but thatís my story and Iím sticking to it.

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Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #29 on: September 26, 2009, 02:55:51 AM »
Well, I'd say porn is a form of expression, and therefore a form of art. Art itself is debatable and generally a point of view, of course. What one person perceives as art, isn't art for another.
So, yes, for me, porn -is- definitely a form of art.
« Last Edit: September 26, 2009, 10:32:21 AM by Nicholas »

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Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #30 on: September 26, 2009, 08:51:26 AM »
I believe it lies in the intention. I don't believe Nude Descending a staircase or Michelangelo's David were intended to be sold so someone could masturbate to them, as where as most porn is for the opposite reason. 

Offline kylie

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Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #31 on: September 26, 2009, 10:11:37 PM »
As far as social trends... 
Based on testing reactions to a set of stock images, Beth Eck (cite at end) has suggested how nudity is often interpreted socially in the US:


1) Artistic
     Most typically: Images that can be read as "old" (such as black and whites) or bodies that can be read as not not fitting contemporary ideals of beautific shape.

     People also tend to imagine, when asked in the abstract, that paintings and sculptures are more likely to be art than porn.

2) Pornographic
    First of all, "not art!"  People think they "know art when they see it" and don't socially feel much need to justify it.  Yet, Eck found that people tend to be less clear on how they know art, as opposed to porn.  The "marks" of porn are popularly assumed to be more obvious. 

     Porn is explained as "provocative" poses of nude bodies.  However, what is "provocative" has changed historically:  In her own time, the Mona Lisa was often thought to be staring out a challenge or invitation to so many men who passed her frame.  In more contemporary measures, often female orifices are focused on by the camera/perspective. 
 
3) Informational
     E.g. the "cultural" side of National Geographic.  Basically if the people and setting "looks foreign," it's okay.  With the exception that there is a public debate about whether even here, young boys might acceptably be shown in the nude.  It's more accepted to depict a mother and child with nudity to convey as a nurturing if emotionally distant relationship (high infant mortality in developing countries). 

     Also, nudity in medical texts.  Surrounded by appropriate jargon and perhaps, with signs of an operation underway.

4) Commodity-marketing
(advertising)... Eck says this category is culturally "under construction."

     A certain glossiness, telltale coloration and camera "tricks" are often cited in deciding that an image is being "sold" hard enough to fall into this category.  Younger generations are more likely than their elders to allow that some nudes are "simply" marketing tools.

Eck notes that some images, such as Demi Moore pregnant or nude pieces involved in debate about funding for the National Endowment for the Arts (particularly those that managed to go on display outside the museums) actually fall easily into multiple categories.  In those cases, people usually go to great lengths "explaining" how they see certain parts as more important such that they can place the work as one of these four.

Eck, Beth A. 2001. "Nudity and Framing: Classifying Art, Pornography, Information and Ambiguity." Sociological Forum 16(4): 603-632
     

Offline germwaster

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #32 on: October 07, 2009, 01:17:40 PM »
Art can be Pornography.  Pornography can be Art.

If the intention is to arouse, it is, by definition, pornography.

Naked body parts or explicit acts are definitely not required to be defined as pornography.

Offline Chea

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #33 on: October 07, 2009, 07:24:07 PM »
Pornography is art, plus there are different kinds of porn softcore and hardcore for instance.

Offline Will

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #34 on: October 07, 2009, 07:33:09 PM »
While I agree that the two can easily overlap, I hesitate to say that all porn is art. >.>

Offline Phoenix

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #35 on: October 07, 2009, 10:41:08 PM »
I don't know, but I do know that I have a lot more issue with deciding what's art and what's gore... and I'd rather my daughter see porn over gore and violence any day.

The line between porn and art is really a question of social mores, I think. Right now, supposedly (don't ask me for statistics, please, I can't be bothered) there is currently a rising trend towards fundamentalism (religion) again. This could explain the swing towards puritanical views of what's art and what's porn.

Offline Moonhare

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #36 on: October 08, 2009, 12:25:33 AM »
I would have to say that porn is art, in its own context. There has been what we might consider porn carved into temples, painted onto silks, and displayed openly in many societies far into history. The kama sutra, which has been around for centuries, is explicit in its depiction of sex acts. Yet, I doubt any of us would call it porn in today's standards.

Is it the medium that changes our perspective? That the porn we see is of real people in the act through photography and not just representations of it through ink, pencil, stone, clay, or play on light?

Offline Will

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #37 on: October 08, 2009, 08:20:57 AM »
So, even the most grimy and nasty of porn, filmed in questionable motels with drug-addled actors/actresses, would still be art?

Offline Moonhare

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #38 on: October 08, 2009, 10:12:10 AM »
I hate to say it, as it is not my personal taste for such a thing, but yes. There are surely some that would find it tasteful as it would represent them themselves. Art does represent life, so surely the ones that enjoy the more amateurish versions would still find it art. Truthfully, being out of your head with alcohol or drugs happens in real life without cameras rolling. Whether there was consent for the video in that case is more a question to me than its content. (I seem to remember a few films that showed both drug use and sexual acts, even if they were only acted out and no explicit detail was shown. It was still perceived as the act taking place in the story, yet these are not porn, they have an R film rating.)

Would I want to see something like that in a museum? No. But it has its place. I would prefer a play on skin with cloth and light, not the more explicit versions, but that is my taste, not to everyone else. I would also enjoy sculpture, ink, or any other medium, but again not the explicit even in something like the kamasutra, shown in a museum. Not that I think it shouldn't be shown, but that it would be up to the individual to decide if they want to determine that for themselves.

Again the question: Would you say the same thing if the same scene was inked or painted instead of photographed? Would it be art then, or still none art porn?

Offline Will

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #39 on: October 08, 2009, 11:25:01 AM »
It comes down to intent for me.  If it's meant to get someone aroused and make a profit, then it's porn.  If it's made to explore some sort of interesting visual or emotional aspect, then it's art.

Many films do indeed include sex and drugs, implied or otherwise.  Like I said, purpose is what defines it for me, not content.  Whether or not it has an adult rating, it can still be porn, as long as its purpose is to make someone aroused and to turn a profit.  If the sex and drugs are used to explore something deeper, such as the development of a character, then I would consider it art.  Of course, as I said before, it can be both.

Offline Leala Magnus

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #40 on: November 09, 2009, 04:22:28 PM »
Art is something that doesn't express sexual desire. I have drawn nude people in my real life drawing class, and in all the drawings I have seen in my class I do not find them pornographic.

I think that the way things are suggested like a look the person is giving, body language, and what not can give away reasons to something being more of porn than art.

But everyone has their own description of art and something I may find porn realated someone else may think its more or an art.

Also its got to do with the way its displayed. If you have a piece of art displayed a certian way or put up somewhere it can give off the assumption that its porn

Offline KyoZero

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Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #41 on: November 09, 2009, 06:51:53 PM »
Some folks think the act of sex or apparent genitalia constitute porn. I think we try way too hard in this society to label things. Porn means nothing to me. It is still art IMO...can't imagine it'sthe most popular opinion but hey it is mine

-Kyo

Offline Cold Heritage

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #42 on: November 09, 2009, 08:49:56 PM »
I don't think it's terribly meaningful to make the distinction anymore, given what passes for art.

Offline Rhapsody

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #43 on: November 09, 2009, 09:18:14 PM »
http://www.ratepornorart.com/

It shows you a nude and you choose whether it's art or porn in your opinion.  Once you've rated it you get to see what everybody else thought.

I'm doing this as honestly as I can, and I've rated a couple dozen images by now.  And I believe that what one person may find art, another is going to find porn.  Conversely, what one person finds porn, another person will find art.  It's a very subjective line to debate, imo.

In my case, "porn" for me is dictated by the context of the picture.  A naked model spread-eagled against the breathtaking beauty of nature, with bright colors and clarity?  Art.  Angles of the human body as the models bend and twist and pose?  Art.  A woman's naked form being bound with ropes?  Porn.  Two girls tangling tongues?  Porn.  Dramatic shadows that concurrently highlight and conceal portions of the body?  Art.   A body being displayed with seemingly no meaning other than to display the body?  Porn.

But that's just me.  The beauty of it is, someone else can have an entirely different opinion about the exact same images.

Offline Will

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #44 on: November 09, 2009, 09:37:24 PM »
I pretty much agree on all of that, Rhapsody.  I would take it a little further myself though, and say that some could be both.  Say, if the girl bound in ropes was cast in dramatic shadows?  It could be meant specifically to arouse (which I consider porn) and also to be visually interesting (which I consider art).

So, basically, just blurring the line a little further. *laughs*

Offline Dizzi

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #45 on: November 09, 2009, 10:02:25 PM »
well, I noticed on the site that there was like, ONE image that was 100% art and two images that were 98% porn.  Those two images were the only images with an erect penis in it I saw.  Conclusion?  Breasts/vagina means that there is a fine line between it in the publics eye.  If there is an erect penis in it, it is almsot instantly labelled porn.

Offline mannik

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #46 on: November 09, 2009, 11:04:40 PM »
Well, one of my favorite artists (Alex Grey) has painted a number of pieces all about human sexuality and attraction, such as....
 (Copulation)
http://media.photobucket.com/image/alex%20grey/danamontano/postcard32.jpg
 
and
 (kissing)
http://peekbrain.files.wordpress.com/2009/01/alex-grey-kissing.png?w=468&h=630
 
Oddly enough I couldn't find the two pictures I was really hoping to find, which was basically a large, erect phallus and a vagina.
 
You'd think that sort of stuff would be easy to find on the internet, but noooo.
 
 

Offline Talia

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #47 on: November 10, 2009, 10:23:41 AM »
Wow, I had never heard of him. What you have linked, does look interesting. I will have to hunt around for more.

Offline mannik

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #48 on: November 10, 2009, 05:37:11 PM »
Yeah, Alex Grey is awesome. His work is centered around what it is to be a human on the spiritual journy of life and our constant search for higher awareness.
 
Sex and love are important steps along that journy. It is vital to understanding the dual nature of existance, of the ebb and flow of energies, and their polarities...opposites attracting, moving and flowing toward eachother with a primal longing to merge together as one. It is how we tap into into the primal energies of nature, and manafest the powers of creation.
 
(So in a way, porn is art as it is an expression of one of our deepest and basic levels of concious awareness.)

Offline Talia

Re: Art or Porn
« Reply #49 on: November 10, 2009, 05:42:31 PM »
Thanks for all the great info. If you have anymore links or what not, please feel free to let me know. I would appreciate it.