What Is The Three Of John Berger Ways Of Seeing

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The objective of this essay is to examine Chapter 3 of John Bergers Ways of Seeing and to apply the central ideas of the text to two contemporary images. Ways of Seeing focuses on European oil paintings while addressing the portrayal of the female body in art and how it has changed over time, with this in mind my chosen images are paintings from the last thirty years and reflect changes in society, style, and the practice of art and design.
The images I have chosen are Tracey Emin’s Spending Time with You (2015) (Fig.1) and Lucian Freud’s Benefits Supervisor Sleeping (1995) (Fig.2). This essay will explore these works in relation to the key ideas of the text. The key issues raised by Bergers in Ways of Seeing are as follows; the difference
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He proposes that in this way she makes herself into an object and as a result of this becomes a nude.
The objectification of woman in art and the systemic sexism displayed in the works Berger discusses are indicative of a larger societal problem. However, we have undoubtedly progressed in the years since the publication of Ways of Seeing; this is demonstrated in the incredibly different approach to the female nude by contemporary artists such as Freud and Erin as discussed above. In fact, it is a strong argument that Bergers definition of nude is no longer relevant and instead the naked nude may be more appropriate.
Unfortunately many of the issues raised in Bergers text such as the male gaze remain relevant today. The unequal relationship between men and women as evidenced by the European nude is deeply intwined into our culture and the subconscious of the modern woman. To conclude although the nude has developed and changed with time, many of Bergers arguments still hold true particularly across media like television and advertising.
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