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Jock Sturges: Radiant Identities: Photographs by Jock Sturges Paperback – 1 Jul 2004


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Product details

  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Aperture; New edition edition (1 July 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0893816493
  • ISBN-13: 978-0893816490
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 24.8 x 29.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 477,771 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Synopsis

A collection of black-and-white photographs by an acclaimed and controversial artist offers unique and artistic nude studies exploring youth, family, and intimacy in the modern world.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 29 July 2004
Format: Paperback
Before reading this review or this book, please be aware that it contains many consensual nude images of male and female children in family settings. This book would not be able to get an "R" rating if it were a motion picture. If such things are offensive, read no further.
Jock Sturges is creating a time-lapse view of a handful of familes. This book is the second in the series, following the superb work called The Last Day of Summer. In this book, most of those who posed for the photographs were asked to describe the experience. Here are two quotes from what they said:
"We are not naked for the pictures, we are naked for the summer, and because we are alive."
"This I enjoy."
The images are done with a large format camera and reproduced in gelatin silver prints. The models often help set up the equipment and suggest scenes to shoot.
Mr. Sturges takes photographs each year, and publishes them. From these images, you can see the subtle changes in the person, how their relations grow with siblings, friends and parents, and the inner core of the person that is unchanging. His subjects are people who regularly practice naturism in Europe and the United States. So he is capturing them as they would normally be.
Taken outdoors usually, the images can acquire an almost lyrical quality. One image in this book deserves special mention. I think it is the best I have seen of Mr. Sturges's work. The image is of Alisa, Christina, Misty Dawn, and Teresa in Northern California in 1993. It shows the young women lolling on misty rocks just above the boiling ocean looking ever so much like self-absorbed versions of the mythical sirens, but with the ease and comfort of sunning sea lions. It is an extraordinary vision of natural joy.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 8 Mar 1998
Format: Hardcover
It seems Jock Sturges has simply accepted that no matter what our age, our sexualities are with us. There is rich expression of this in our family lives and every aspect of our experience as we grow. His photographs are startling in their eloquence on the subject. There is something timeless and perfect that speaks to us from the images of pubescent children that he and his models fashion together - in nature, in friendship and in their families.
Their is a natural honesty in his work that shocks many Americans because of the deep tradition here of cultural puritanism. If you are so afflicted, gentle reader, please be unafraid to peek through your fingers at this book.
Jock Sturges speaks to us in this volume with courage and from his deep humanity, enormous artistry and rare technical virtuosity. His photographs become luminous among our own memories.
- Bob Brecht
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Kindle Customer on 16 Jun 2004
Format: Paperback
How to review this?
Simplistic? This is a coffee table book of Black and White images of mainly naked teenage, or at least pubescent, girls.
No, that makes it sound like something thats perverted.
Advisory? Don't buy this if you're offended by the human body!
No, do buy it, and see how natural it is to be nude, or semi clothed!
Historical? Jock Sturges did have problems with the American police who said some of his images were pornographic.
They didn't win, a judge said they were ok.
Summing up: The cover picture gives a guide to some of the pictures inside. There are pictures of nudists, male and female, mainly youngsters luxuriating in the sun in France and California.
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By A Customer on 8 Nov 1997
Format: Paperback
The images in this book evoke a sense of innocence that we have lost in fear of retrobution from the religeous zealots in our society. I myself come from a Christian point of view, and I can truly say that I was never offended by this body of work. We need people like you pushing the envelope of our preconceived notions of so called "Purity". Your work has reinspired me to take chances in my work. Thank you.
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16 of 22 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 22 Jan 2001
Format: Hardcover
It is no exaggeration to say that this book of photographs, and the others in the Sturges' canon, has attracted as much notoriety as anything else published in the last century. Indeed, so intensely has the debate raged about the in/appropriateness of Sturges' art that it is very difficult to look at his work with an unbiased eye.
Since his famous courtroom victory Sturges has become something of a martyr to the cause of free expression. He has assumed the (indignant) moral high ground and his detractors have routinely been dismissed as censorial (sin no. 1 in modern America), fascist, and/or Christian.
Perhaps much of the criticism is deserved; however, there are still many unresolved uncertainties surrounding his work, many of which are apparent in Radiant Identities. Sturges' work is often described as being predominantly about the innocence of children and the interaction of close families. Yet there is nothing to explain his obvious fascination for adolescent girls, whose images dominate this work. The text does not address this imbalance, which does seem to raise questions best not left to the speculative imagination.
There is, of course, nothing intrinsically wrong with child/adult studies of the nude and only an extreme minority of eccentrics considers nudity essentially immoral. Even in the Christian tradition (and this is an important point as much criticism of Sturges' work has come from the Christian Right) there is a history of artistic representations of the protagonists of the Christian story either nude or near nude. (The crucified Christ is often portrayed in this fashion and naked children abound in depictions of cherubim, etc.) As these images have been venerated throughout the history of the church the religious objection cannot revolve around nudity per sei.
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