Representation of the Human body in art
“What spirit is so empty and blind, that it cannot recognize the fact that the foot is more noble than the shoe, and skin more beautiful than the garment with which it is clothed?” -Michelangelo
art of the human body
Since the beginning of art people have visually recreated portrayals of the human body. Artists have drawn, carved and painted the human form to tell stories, record events, convey social comments and challenge the values and beliefs of their societies.
The depiction of the body as an object of beauty and power is particularly prominent in Western Art, as seen through the Renaissance, swaying cultural attitudes and societal comprehensions of the 'ideal' human figure seen through these artworks.
Through contemporary art, artists have come to question and challenge the predisposed notions of beauty, race, gender, sexuality, censorship, morality and ethics through representations of the human form.
In our society now, the representations of the body in art continues to be of interest to may artists and art critics, resulting in a variety of views and comments especially directed to the objectification of the female nude. Writers include Germaine Greer, Linda Nochlin, John Berger, Naomi Wolf, Kenneth Clark, Sigmund Freud, and Michel Foucault have spent countless hours discussing their views on this subject.
Think, Investigate, Create