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Excerpt from Nude Attitude article Nude Art 1995

(Published Naturally Magazine Fall 1995 "If statues are free why not we?")


Rules of polite society don't always make sense.  Such as, two words describe the same thing, but one is acceptable and the other, the vulgar one is not.  So it is with our clothing obsessed polite society when it accepts, however reluctantly, the nude in art.  Even with the historical prudery in America, the liberal intellectuals have somehow convinced the moral masses that nudes, so common in European sculpture and painting, would have to be tolerated here, or we would always be considered the unsophisticated backwater of the art world.


Actually, the moral masses have fought against nude art, cross and nail, and any acceptance in our culture has been won over the years through the courts interpreting correctly our guarantee of free expression.  But, even these wins are arbitrary.  There is still no definition of what "lewd or lascivious" means from one "average person applying contemporary community standards" to another, so nudes are often begrudgingly allowed because of "artistic merit."


This has given us a very compartmentalized acceptance of nudity.  Nude humans in public are against the law, but public representations of nude humans are protected as free expression. 


Silly, but true.



This is why, on South Miami Beach, where people are not allowed to sunbathe nude, a nude bronze statue has been basking in the sun since 1928.


When you see this spread crotch Bronze of Heracles that sat for years outside the main entrance to the New Orleans Museum of Art, makes you wonder what we are trying to hide with our anti-nudity laws. 

Remember the great "Wardrobe Malfunction" in February 2004, when Janet Jackson's right breast was exposed on National TV during the Superbowl halftime show to damage all the kids in America beyond repair? 



Well, all those Americans who got in a snit over that should not take their kids to the National Gallery in Washington D.C. (unfortunately, there are actually prudes who do not expose their kids to nude art) 
Apparently "Wardrobe Malfunctions" were common centuries before the great Janet Jackson Superbowl event.

This marble statue is titled A Companion of Diana and was sculpted in 1724 by Jean-Louis Lemoyne. 

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