|Dimensions||32 × 24.5 cm|
Venus is a selection of breathtaking photographs documenting the story of Venus and the female nude. Using as a backdrop some of England’s most historically significant houses – Sledmere House, Newby Hall, Castle Howard, Holkham Hall, Alnwick Castle and Houghton Hall – the sculpture galleries, monuments and fountains provide the perfect setting for these beautifully executed black and white photos, from a renowned and celebrated photographer of the female form.
Venus was known for her ethereal beauty, which transcended mortal desire. The divinity of Venus legitimised her nudity, and as a result her depiction was never scandalous. In order to convey her exalted status painters and sculptors were careful to always illuminate one of her heavenly attributes – emerging in a chariot from the sea, or with flowers growing under her feet.
With the advent of photography this disassociation from the mortal world became difficult to execute. Venus, as the perfect encapsulation of beauty, was no longer the product of an artist’s genius but a real image of a known, nude woman. As such the mystique of Venus has been all but lost to the modern world…