Dear blog fans !
I have recently reviewed Messengers of Eros: Representations of Sex in Australian Writing, Xavier Pons's lastest monograph.
The review was published in E-rea
"Back in early 2005, I was loitering in the NSW Art Gallery and I remember coming across a charcoal white chalk sketch of a Standing male nude, back view (c.1867) by Hugh Ramsay, along with the following comment: “On the verso of this drawing is another life study of the same male figure from the front.” Whether art lovers were supposed to take this piece of information at face value and muse over such prudishness or read it as a witty, if jocular, note pointing to ludicrous forms of censorship of the Bill Henson kind and – in keeping with the Ars est celare artem principle (i.e. art lies in concealing art) – suggesting nudity could be raised to the rank of art has baffled me for a long time. It is not until recently when the curator of this exhibition sent me an email substantiating that there was actually a sitting male nude overleaf that I felt there was no room left for gleeful speculation. It is funny how interpretative our brain can be just for the sake of bridging the anxiety-provoking knowledge gap, isn’t it?"
More to be read here: http://erea.revues.org/index1007.html
Copies can be ordered from the publisher here: