Evolution Of Female Nude Figures Cultural Studies Essay

Nakedness in art every bit good as the human signifier combined can be traced through out all the epochs in art get downing from pre-historic times and still being seen in today 's art, late in picture taking every bit good. The bare figure in art has by and large reflected, with few exclusions, societal criterions of aesthetics every bit good as morality of the certain clip period in the picture, sculpture and more late picture taking. Just as in human history the human bare figure has been one of the rule topics in art history for creative persons.

The bare figure has been represented on pre-historic statues and pictures throughout all epochs since. The male nude was more normally used in the start, particularly in ancient Greece. Today society and their morality, values and mentality on life has evolved and similarly so has the female nude in art, recently to be more extremely represented and regarded. Today, unlike in the past many civilizations approve of nakedness in art even when they do n't O.

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K. of existent nakedness. For illustration, even an art gallery which exhibits bare pictures will typically non accept nakedness of a visitant. Just like the female bare figure has evolved throughout art history due to societal, political and spiritual influences so has all art through the old ages. Development is portion of life and so is art, therefore art has evolved through the and merely like development influences bring upon alterations in art, it is safe to state that art influences in writing, interior architectural and other design throughout the epochs.

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The development of the female bare figure throughout art history

The bare figure may be absent in Egyptian, Iranian, and Etruscan art but decidedly non from Grecian art. The Greeks seemed to encompass it, when it came to the male figure that is. The bare standing male figure in art foremost became popular in Ancient Greece sculpture art. This sculpture was tie ining the male figure with moral excellence and athletic power. Womans nevertheless where seen in a different manner when it came to nakedness. The female figure was associated with deity of reproduction. For about five centuries it was said that the Greeks preferred to see a female figure clothed. In the fourth century BCE sculpturer Praxelitis carved Fig.1 ( Knidian Aphrodite, ) a bare Aphrodite. This established a new artistic tradition of the bare female signifier.

hypertext transfer protocol: //1.bp.blogspot.com/_0gdLTc1uZLY/TGNbOT_qJuI /AAAAAAAAAqM/0d6gCjVDy5E/s1600 /Aphrodite+Cnidian.jpg Fig.1 Praxiteles, ( Knidian Aphrodite )

This sculpture was non like the overdone birthrate statuettes from the Middle East but was sculptured utilizing idealised size and proportion that were based on mathematical ratios. Here the female nude has a self-protective airs that adds to her modestness. This is seen through the manner she is keeping her manus and covering her sexual organ. This sculpture was created to portray the ideal version of the Greek female nude. This female nude was besides designed to appeal to the spectator 's senses every bit good as his head. This manner of portraying the female bare figure was subsequently adopted by Hellenistic Greco-Roman art and subsequently discarded during the Pax Romana epoch. Some of the finest Grecian sculpturers of female bare statues include: Phidias, Polykleitos, Myron Praxiteles and Hagensandrus, Polydorus and Athenodoros. It is besides of import to observe that the Harappan civilization predates Grecian art by about two Millennia and was one of the first civilizations to bring forth bare bronzes. In fig.2 ( The Dancing Girl of Mohenjo-Daro ) we see a six-inch high figurine made of the lost wax method which was cast in approximately 2, 500 BCE.

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Fig.2 ( The Dancing Girl of Mohenjo-Daro )

Female Nudes in Early Christian and Byzantine Art

The Medieval Christian and Byzantine epoch, was a Christian civilization from the beginning. In this epoch the female bare figure was much diminished and bare figures were used merely in rare word pictures of Adam and Eve every bit good as the Christ-child figure. Female nakedness was seldom seen in work from this epoch, seldom in pictures or Byzantine Mosaic art. When it was shown in these rare instances it was associated with either feelings of shame and guilt or with low-brow wit. Equally far as Byzantine civilization was concerned, the bare male and female were excessively straight associated with that of heathen Grecian civilization.

Female Nudes in the Art of the Middle Ages

When the epoch of Gothic Art finally came along, perceptual experiences and attitudes towards female nakedness in sculpture, pictures, stained glass and other types of art. Nudity became portrayed as iniquitous, this can be seen in the well known narrative of Adam and Eve and the Garden of Eden. Early in the Christian epoch accent was placed on celibacy detering images of nudeness even further. However here lies a paradox with the Gothic creative persons ( including cathedral sculpturers ) were permitted to jump to the bare female figure in the name of `` pureness '' , portrayed as a virginal suggestion of the organic structure. In Fig.3 Gregor Erhart ( St Mary Magdalene ) we see a polychromatic wooden sculpture, besides known as `` La Belle Allemande '' . This figure was created by the Late Gothic wood Carver Gregor Erhart in Augsburg, Germany

La belle allemande

Fig.3 Gregor Erhart ( St Mary Magdalene )

Female Nudes in Renaissance Art

During the Italian Renaissance Roman-Greco art every bit good as its cultural values were rediscovered. This lead to a return of the female nude to the vanguard of creativeness, non merely in sculpture but in all right art as good. Differing from the earlier epochs in art the creative persons of the Italian Renaissance can be seen as nonliteral Masterss. These creative persons were non satisfied in curtailing themselves to making idealised bare female figures based on mathematical proportions. These creative persons such as Botticelli, Titian and Jacopo Robusti Tintoretto wanted to portray the natural racy beauty of a adult female. Seductive heat became more of import to them than the right geometry.

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This alteration can be seen in Fig.4 Alessandro Botticelli ( Birth of Venus, 1484 ) .The figures of the adult females in this picture can be seen as much more juicy and full rounded than in the old art epochs where the proportion of the bare female figures are idealized and based on mathematic proportions. The bare female figure is naturalistically portrayed in this epoch.

Northern Renaissance artists proved merely as every bit unfastened. Jan Van Eyck was an creative person from this epoch and had already incorporated naturalism into his pictures. Another creative person from this epoch, Hieronymus Bosch, used female nakedness to add force to his revelatory mentalities on that of wickedness every bit good as godly judgement. Bosch 's most good known picture can be seen in Fig.5 Hieronymus Bosch ( The Garden of Earthly Delights, 1510 ) . In this painting the bare figures are evildoers and the ruin of human and world is depicted. The figures in this picture, typical to the epoch of Renaissance, can be seen as realistic instead than idealized.

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Fig.5 Hieronymus Bosch ( The Garden of Earthly Delights, 1510 )

None of these alterations in the Renaissance means that Christian ethical motives and values had changed. In fact, if it delayed to the originative endowments of Titian and other creative persons of the clip, the Christian Church still remained consciously guarded, even opposed, towards the usage of female every bit good as male nakedness in public sculptures and picture, particularly in churches. It was no surprise to anyone that the Council of Trent ( 1545-1563 ) , Ecumenical Council of the Roman Catholic Church, attempted to convey to a halt the `` immoral '' and `` paganizing '' elements which had been claimed to go excessively widespread in Renaissance art, under the authorization of classical canons.

Female Nudes in Baroque Art

The Renaissance continued to hold an influence throughout the different art motions in European Art. After the Renaissance the bare figure captivation continued. This bucked up creative persons to regenerate their mentality on the bare figure and the antique tradition. The female bare figure received a fresh new significance in the art of Rubens, who with much satisfaction painted adult females with generous juicy figures every bit good as beaming tegument. The Baroque spirit for fables based on traditional metaphors besides preferred undraped figures. These figures were used to stand for constructs such as the Graces and Truth.

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Female Nudes in Rococo and Neoclassical Art

In Rococo art one can see how the use of the female bare figure evolves and becomes more implicative the female nudes becomes more playful every bit good every bit implicative every bit good as playful. This is clearly depicted in art plants like in Fig.6 Francois Boucher ( Lean backing Girl, 1751 ) and Fig. 7 Jean-Antoine ( The Judgment of Paris, 1751 ) . hypertext transfer protocol: //www.galerieversailles.com/MyImages /BOUCHER % 20- % 20Girl % 20Reclining % 20 ( Louise % 20O_Murphy ) .jpg

Fig.6 Francois Boucher ( Lean backing Girl, 1751 )

In this picture we can see how the female nude has become more implicative by looking in the manner the adult females is lying on the divan bed, on her tummy with her legs dispersed broad, perchance looking at person.

The more playful word picture of the female nude can be seen

In this Fig.7 Jean-Antoine ( The Judgment of Paris, 1721 ) through the manner the adult female is standing with the curtain over her caput.

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Fig.7 Jean-Antoine ( The Judgment of Paris,1721 )

Fig.8 Joseph Nollekens ( Venus, 1773 ) is an illustration of Neoclassical female nude. This epoch was exemplified by sculpturer creative persons such as John Nollekens and more others. These sculpturers reconverted to the old-timer signifiers and airss of sculptures.http: //www.mutualart.com/Images /2009_03/12/0066/134858/134858_8bfc7373-7e4d-423b-a3ed-db57c7e8f0e7_-1_570.Jpeg

Female Nudes in 19th-Century Art

Female bare figures from 19th-Century Art can be seen as placed in far- fetched, unusual scenes, and non mundane scenes as in the other art epochs.

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Fig.8 Jean-Auguste-Dominque Ingres ( The Valpincon Bather, 1808 )

In this figure we see a bare adult female sitting on the border of a bed with her dorsum towards the spectator.

When looking at the fantasy images of Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema an extraordinary scene can besides be seen. In Fig.9, Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema ( The Tepidarium, 1881 ) a bare female is lying on what seems to be some kind of twenty-four hours bed. She is lying on a mat made of carnal tegument and covering her sexual organ with a plume. The extraordinary scene can be related to the name of this picture. Tapidarium is the room between the hot and cold suites in Roman baths. Her face is somewhat turned off and has no look on.

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Fig.9 Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema ( The Tepidarium, 1881 )


From these scenes one can see that in the nineteenth century artworks the female nude is simply an object of desire. In these art works adult females are the sex that is looked at and work forces are the sex that is looking. The female nudes here do n't hold much personality ; the faces are turned off from the spectator or have no accent on them. The female nude in the nineteenth century exists merely to be enjoyed by the spectator who is most likely the male figure. More figures that represent this are Fig.10 Francisco Goya ( Naked Maja, 1800 ) and Fig.11 Ingres ( Odalisque, 1841 ) .

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Fig.10 Francisco Goya, ( Naked Maja,1800 )

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Fig.11 Jean Auguste Dominque Ingres ( Odalisque, 1841 ) .

Female Nudes in 20th-Century Art

In the 20th century the academic tradition lost its ain cultural high quality, yet the bare figure has remained a steady characteristic in modern-day or modern art. Artists like Paul Cezanne ( Les Grandes Baigneuses, 1900-6 ) , Amedeo Modigliani ( Lean backing Nude, 1917 and others ) , Pablo Picasso ( Les Demoiselles d'Avignon, 1907 ) , and Gustav Klimt ( Adam and Eve, 1918 ) all incorporated the bare female figure into their manner. So did all the German Expressionist groups. ) In 20th-century sculpture art, pragmatism of the anatomy was anatomical pragmatism was exemplified by the bare polyester figures of a modern-day photorealist creative person from America. John De Andrea.

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Fig.12 John De Andrea ( Couple, 1971 )

The voyeuristic tradition was held changeless by Balthus ( The Guitar Lesson, 1934 and The Room, 1952 ) , Anders Zorn a fecund Swedish Impressionist ( Girls From Dalarna Having a Bath, 1908 ) , every bit good as a German creative person Gerhard Richter ( Ema: Nude on a Staircase, 1966 ) .


It is safe to state that throughout art history and it 's eras we have witnessed many different attacks towards non merely the female nude but the male bare figure every bit good as topic in art. Every epoch clearly had alterations in its ain manner and attitude. It is non surprising that after all these old ages the genre of the bare female is still popular and is continuously being investigated by new strains of creative persons in new ways. In this of all time altering word picture of the genre it has become widely academic today and can even be said to be passe by some, so being seen as merely one more genre art pupils at college demand to analyze before traveling on to other of import affair. This is due to a society that has become saturated with sexual media and causes for the traditional female nude in traditional art to lose its ability to floor and tickle. The perceptual experience of the female nude has evolved throughout the different epochs in art and is seen the manner it is seen today because of society and it aesthetics and moralism. I do believe that art has influenced the human and evolves with society as the universe evolves, therefore art has influenced, in writing, interior architectural and other design throughout the centuries.


Visual-art-corks.com, Female nudes in picture and sculpture [ Online ] . Available From: hypertext transfer protocol: //www.visual-arts-cork.com/genres/female-nudes-art-history.htm [ Accessed: 22 March 2011 ]

Sorbella.J ( 2008 ) Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Nude in Baroque and subsequently Art [ Online. ] Available From: hypertext transfer protocol: //www.visual-arts-cork.com/genres/female-nudes-art-history.htm [ Accessed: 20 March 2011 ]

Updated: May 19, 2021
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Evolution Of Female Nude Figures Cultural Studies Essay. (2020, Jun 02). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/evolution-of-female-nude-figures-cultural-studies-new-essay

Evolution Of Female Nude Figures Cultural Studies Essay essay
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