Objectification in Art: a brief essay

The following essay provides a commentary on the negative impact the male gaze has relating to objectification of the female nude, and oppression of women. The male gaze is provided through various Art movements; including Fauvism, the Brücke, and Cubism.

30 March 2017

The Artistic Oppression of Women

            The study of art history provides a strong argument in proving controversial perspectives surrounding the role of women. The various art movements which have transpired during the reign of mankind depend heavily on the depiction of the surrounding environment. The forms, or lack of forms, captured by the artist become a representation of their modern world. In recent times, Modernity brought fourth the study of nude models and the female form. Male artists become the venerated figures of the History Cannon – thus, they are worthy of the title ‘genius’. Women were left to the side, and for many years, were rejected the opportunity to study art academically. The female nude – representing the respective cultural growth in prostitution and courtesan women –  is designed for the eyes of male artists to feast upon and reproduce. The changing world reflects its values through the physical representation of the oppression of women captured by the male gaze of the artists amid the Twentieth Century. Notable figures of the History Canon who depict the oppression of the female form include the Fauvist pioneer Henri Matisse, the Brücke artist Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, and the Cubist genius, Pablo Picasso.


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