Images of the female breast in auteur photographs Texts in Italian and English
Of the myths of contemporary society that of the female breast has been one of those most open to discussion. Individual and social considerations, complicated by a variety of emotive and psychological components, founder in a myriad of platitudes conditioned by moral and aesthetic, and more recently commercial, motivations. An organ of femininity that cannot and must not be severed from the body to which it belongs, the breast is a topical subject that oversteps the borders of its original function of nurturing and its unique aesthetic charge. Reality and imaginary, the latter continues to predominate and only apparently is difficult to deal with in photography. A photograph depicts reality but is at the same time creation, an objective document that can become subjective when it suggests and leaves room for the imagination. The photographs in the catalogue are insightful, occasional mad and provocatory photographs stimulate the spirit of observation and encourage reflection. Photographs that always affect the viewer, teaching us to see what we are looking at. Considering that many photographs of the breast linger on the aesthetic nude, this book instead focus on the veiled breast, so much more stimulating to the imagination. The breast does not lend itself to facile simplifications. In attempting to analyze each of its principal distinctive elements (form, function, symbol…) one is faced with social (ethnic, cultural, …) and individual (moral, intellectual, …). While as a whole the photographs selected are unique, at times surprising and endowed with a language of their own, some of them have been matched with literary and non-fiction writing. It is an arbitrary choice based on the conviction that the alliance between art and thought facilitates a global vision. A bitter dissatisfaction with what seems to have been achieved but which is really out of reach, with what is there simply because it was or has been solely glimpsed, manifests itself in a woman's body, desired by man both with his spirit and his senses.