Photographic ‘artistry’ in 1950s men’s magazines.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceOtherResearch

Abstract

Studio Studies: Photographic ‘artistry’ in 1950s men’s magazines Laws on pornography in the 1950s ruled that material appealing to prurient interest in sex that did not have serious artistic value could be banned as obscene. In an attempt to circumvent these rules, certain men’s magazines began to take their lead from the high art that seemed to elude the ban, dubbing themselves as guides for the amateur art photographer and adopting titles like ‘Line and Form’ and ‘Studio Studies’ to suggest artistic integrity rather than salacious titillation. The new publications ‘explored the curves of the female form to demonstrate the artistry of lighting’. Their tawdry ‘nude studies’ were now captioned with technical data - f11 at 125th of a second - to substantiate their serious intent. As the loophole in the law stretched, censors were forced to ask ‘Is this Art?’ Meanwhile, the enthusiastic amateur photographer now had access to equipment that would allow him to process films in the privacy of his own home. No longer having to worry what the local chemist (who normally developed the amateur’s photographs) might think of their choice of subject, men could shut themselves away in a darkened cupboard under the stairs to print their own ‘artistic interpretations of the female form’. In his presentation, Graham Rawle will talk about his book, Diary of An Amateur Photographer and its protagonist – an aspiring glamour photographer caught in this seamy but colourful ‘grey’ area between 1950s art and pornography.
Original languageEnglish
Pages0-0
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2013
EventReconsidering Amateur Photography - University of Brighton, Brighton, United Kingdom
Duration: 21 Sep 201221 Sep 2012
http://arts.brighton.ac.uk/re/research-events/research-conferences/reconsidering-amateur-photography-a-symposium

Conference

ConferenceReconsidering Amateur Photography
CountryUnited Kingdom
CityBrighton
Period21/09/1221/09/12
Internet address

Fingerprint

1950s
Artistry
Amateur Photographers
Art
Amateur
Pornography
Female Form
Nude
Censor
Cupboard
Dubbing
Privacy
Glamour
Integrity
Diary
Obscene
High Arts
Protagonist
Artistic Interpretation
Chemist

Bibliographical note

© 2012 Graham Rawle

Cite this

Rawle, G. (2013). Photographic ‘artistry’ in 1950s men’s magazines.. 0-0. Reconsidering Amateur Photography, Brighton, United Kingdom.
Rawle, Graham. / Photographic ‘artistry’ in 1950s men’s magazines. Reconsidering Amateur Photography, Brighton, United Kingdom.1 p.
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Rawle, G 2013, 'Photographic ‘artistry’ in 1950s men’s magazines.' Reconsidering Amateur Photography, Brighton, United Kingdom, 21/09/12 - 21/09/12, pp. 0-0.

Photographic ‘artistry’ in 1950s men’s magazines. / Rawle, Graham.

2013. 0-0 Reconsidering Amateur Photography, Brighton, United Kingdom.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceOtherResearch

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Rawle G. Photographic ‘artistry’ in 1950s men’s magazines.. 2013. Reconsidering Amateur Photography, Brighton, United Kingdom.