Nude Statues and Pornography


#1

So if we’re at a museum which has naked statues, how can we admire the art without needing to confess pornography? (pornlithoty? I don’t know)


#2

Maybe because nudity does not equal pornography


#3

True, but what precisely is the difference? Pornography begs nudity.


#4

Here’s what the Catechism has to say:

2354 Pornography consists in removing real or simulated sexual acts from the intimacy of the partners, in order to display them deliberately to third parties. It offends against chastity because it perverts the conjugal act, the intimate giving of spouses to each other. It does grave injury to the dignity of its participants (actors, vendors, the public), since each one becomes an object of base pleasure and illicit profit for others. It immerses all who are involved in the illusion of a fantasy world. It is a grave offense.

The appearance of the body is not sinful in itself. Nudity in art is not designed to arouse the audience. I think, in the end, the whole “I know it when I see it” rule applies. May one reasonably conclude that the purpose is artistic, or may one reasonably conclude that it was designed only to arouse the audience? I’d be interested to hear if there’s been a more systemic articulation of what counts and what doesn’t. I’d doubt that, say, Nude Descending a Staircase was intended as pornography.


#5

This reminds me of a store of a famous french sculptor back in the 1800s, he was searching around for the most beautiful female model for his next piece, story said he spent 3 years searching until he found the one he wanted, she was a 14 yr old girl, so he went ahead with it and the piece which showed her topless, was put on display and everyone loved it, everyone agreed she was the right choice as she was very beautiful. His piece was widely praised.

If this had happened today though, its likely NO ONE would be praising this guy or his work, I think most would be calling for his arrest actually and he would be called bad things.

This just goes to show how our views on nudity have been twisted and distorted over the years, so now, if a family sees a naked body in sculpture, the parents shield the kids eyes, tell them to look away, etc. we have been deceived into thinking the naked human body is nasty, dirty, and should not be admired, meaning, something God intended to be admired, to be beautiful, should be covered up, put away, shunned.

This is all work of the enemy.


#6

There is nothing sinful with nudity that I know of ,
I enduldge in the idea every time I shower ,
The image I see in the mirror is what I would define as disappointing art ,
But then , it’s all in the interprutation by the observer :stuck_out_tongue:


#7

Stop committing scrupulosity.


#8

Matt Fradd says in the following video you need to, “compare the intentions of the artist, artists, and the viewers” - check out the video:

Porn and Nude Art: What’s the difference?

youtu.be/tBuTg155y1M


#9

Good answer and insights by Matt Fradd. Thanks for posting that video.


#10

I would say its more about the viewers opinion, even if some artist intended for something to be pornographic, that does not necessarily mean, everyone will interpret the same thing when looking at it.


#11

You can admire the art because the statue is not intended to be pornographic.


#12

That is only your opinion. The enemy wants people to use any excuse to justify looking at porn. See post # 4. The Catechism clearly tells us what is right.

Ed


#13

BornInMarch, while not trying to commit scrupulosity, I’ve had problems with porn in the past, and now wish to err on the safe side. Is this a mistake? I don’t think so.

Edwest2, do you think that something not intended as porn could be made porn by the viewer? I.e. if the Greeks simply wanted to depict athletes, (who exercised naked), there’s nothing wrong with that. However, it could be made porn if women came along and started lusting.


#14

I think the best answer to your question is to focus on setting and circumstance. In ancient Greece, yes, it’s possible. Today, in a museum, it may occur but why bother when you can see actual nudes on the internet? I doubt those looking to lust after looking at statues of nude men today would bother reading scholarly works, with photos, of statues of nude Greek men for excitement/arousal either.

Ed


#15

Well if we’re being totally honest, the land o lakes woman on the butter container is pornography to most teenagers


#16

Depends how you look at the statue? Are you admiring the private parts in an impure way?


#17

And my chemistry teacher’s spandex dress pants did more in teen zone than all the free porn I had access to. Lol. I mean over a decade later and I remember her, dont much recall any porns.


#18

I do believe to the OP the way one tells the differnece between pornography and art is…

A government grant

:smiley: :smiley: :smiley:


#19

Video from Covenant Eyes:

Is Naked Art a Form of Pornography?

youtu.be/aPgz49RGdRE


#20

One must judge as many have said here. Not only the work of art but also the person viewing it must know themselves.

From Jimmy Akin (of CA fame): jimmyakin.com/2009/01/appreciating-beauty-vs-concupiscence.html

Within his comprehensive post he notes:

"Because people are different and subject to different levels of temptation, they will have to determine based on their own self-knowledge and personal history what situations are too dangerous for them to allow themselves to be in.

For some–particularly males at a particular stage of life–even looking at artistic representations of nudes may be too much."


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