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Saturday, November 12, 2011

Beauty Culture at the Annenberg

Today I ventured to the Beauty Culture exhibit at the Annenburg. I had heard fabulous things about the Annenburg Space for Photography, and being so into photography I have always wanted to go but something always got in the way, or maybe something didn’t draw me enough to motivate me to fight the traffic. However with the new house I am so much closer to all things downtown-ish and because the Beauty Culture exhibit sounded so incredible I finally made it a point to go. Ms. Firecracker and I managed to squeeze it into the ever-getting-busier holiday calendar.

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I am still struggling to find the right words to convey the raw thoughts and emotions that this exhibits photographs and the short film churned. For me, the exhibit shouted to take a sincere look at the role of physical appearance in my life and the way I judge the world with that concept of beauty. Being an artist, having worked in advertising, and my hobby as an armature photographer, has given me a better idea of how the media has jacked up the worlds view of beauty however even coming in with a wealth of experience on the subject I still walked away with jewels of wisdom.

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The world has always been obsessed with beauty. The difference is that our ‘idea’ of beauty has changed drastically over the past 22,000 years. If you look at the progression of beauty through art the waif thin androgynous model today has nothing in common with the overweight curvy woman that was considered beautiful in the past. The Beauty Culture exhibit showcased the idea of Venus, the roman goddess of love and beauty, and its representation through time.

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VENUS WILLENDORF, VENUS DE MILO, THE BIRTH OF VENUS, BARBIE (the modern day venus)

With the advertising multi-billion dollar industry centered around a specific perfect beauty it has tapped into a really base nerve with our desire to be beautiful. The sad thing is that only 1% of the world are considered beautiful enough to model and then with modern day retouching we take an impossible beauty and make it even impossible for the 1% to measure up. Living in LALA land I am inundated with ads all day long, everywhere you turn you cannot escape them, and although I am educated enough to intellectually know that most of the ads I see are not real, sadly most people probably see more impossible beauty (billboards, magazines and TV) on a day to day basis than they observe in real life.

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AND THIS DOES NOT EVEN TAKE INTO CONSIDERATION HOW THIS GIRL WORKS OUT, OR EATS, OR HOW MANY COUNTLESS HOURS SHE SPENT TO GET READY FOR THIS PHOTOSHOOT

With this impossible elusive goal for beauty it is no wonder that it is creating painful consequences in our society. More women than ever are turning to plastic surgery trying to beat time with the modern fountain of youth. More young girls than ever are developing eating disorders to try and fit the mold of the role-models they see every day. Physical and psychological issues are becoming rampet and are based on the destructive addiction for beauty. Most of the top photographers will never work with a normal size 12 woman yet some are trying to break the boundries such as Leonardo Nimoy (yes Spock) who worked on a Full Body Project.

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Fantastic space, amazing thought provoking contrivercial exhibit, a great friend, a grand debate and then home for a nap. I say this is one of my favorite days in a while! LOVE!

3 comments:

paul peggy zeus said...

Point Taken. I guess that's why Demi Moore weighs a scant 95 pounds in an insane effort to keep Ashton around. She looks TERRIBLE!

Anonymous said...

I NEED TO SEE THIS IN REAL LIFE and I NEED TO BRING MY HUSBAND ASAP. Sorry for the yelling in excitement, this looks amazing! Thank you for sharing this and HOT boots ;)

lilmansworld said...

This needed a 'warning:don't let toddler look over shoulder'. I'd be happy to visit here. I"m basically gonna have to stay with you for a month for all the fun things I have of awesome stuff you have in LALA land :)

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