i'm not sure what i think about the goings-on in sydney with the photographs being removed by police from bill henson's exhibition, and the news that charges will be laid.
but my thoughts are:
1. i guess if he wanted to depict something special about vulnerability and youth, he could have used a scrawny, under-developed 18-year-old model.
2. it made me feel uncomfortable, while looking him up on the internet, thinking i might inadvertently download something "unacceptable". all in the name of research doesn't really cut it, hey pete townsend?
3. a quick google trying to find american photographer sally mann - who has had her share of controversy for publishing photographs of her children naked over the years - showed me that there have been court-cases in the states where parents dropping off rolls of film to be developed at k-mart and the like have been arrested and charged with child pornography over photos of their children naked.
4. don't all parents take snaps of their babies and kids naked, and in the bath, and rolling on the rug, and at the beach?
5. when i was a teenager, david hamilton was incredibly popular. hell, he was to the poster, card and calendar business in the '70s what anne geddes and her pumpkin-hatted cherubs was to the poster, card and calendar business in '90s. the girls used to love his photos, which were dreamy and romantic, shot through vaseline-coated lenses and usually featured pubescent girls and boys in "various stages of undress." there was even a movie bilitis, and while that was soft-core porn, the posters of ballerinas in tutus and sylvan-wood-nymph boys in pastel togas were not sexually arousing to me, anyway. but then i was that age myself, and not some paedo.
6. i'm nervous about even linking the names david hamilton and sally mann above to any webpages because what you can see is possibly inappropriate.