Friday, 11 January 2008

Camden Town Nudes

Snuck out at lunchtime to have a look at the Walter Sickert exhibition at Somerset House. Looking at the brutal realism of his nudes, there is still something rather unsettling and compelling about them.

It’s easy to understand why the Victorians were shocked and regarded them as pornographic. Though less easy to see why Patricia Cornwall should have concluded a few years ago that they must be the work of a serial killer.

The Jack-The-Ripper factor probably explains the surprisingly large number of National Trust / Middle-England types at the exhibition. I can’t help wondering what their reactions would be if they were looking at the work of a contemporary photographer with the same bohemian fascination for the seedier side of life …

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