Images of Women

Benefits Supervisor Sleeping, 1995

I love the paintings of Lucian Freud. This one has made the recent news because it is appearing at auction in New York next month and is expected to smash the current world auction record for a work by a living artist, held by Jeff Koons’s Hanging Heart which fetched £11.3m last year. I couldn’t find the dimensions for the actual painting, but the model Sue Tilley is life-size.

Besides appreciating this as a great work of art, this painting makes me think about a lot of things . . . . the value of art, nudity in art, women’s body size & media images of women eg what is “socially acceptable”, the tyranny of slenderness . . . .

I don’t watch TV or take in much mainstream media, but I am very much aware that looksism is alive and well. Not only in terms of ideal body size, but in the promotion of cosmetic surgery and anti-ageing products.

Don’t Buy It has some thought provoking, eye opening posts on body size and the sexualization of women and girls in toys and advertising. It links from Jade Nadezhda’s website about negative messages in advertising, including her book proposal.

Size 0 vs Size 18

Venus of Willendorf, 4 ½”

The Love Your Body campaign is a good starting place for information about the proliferation and negative effects of commercial images of women and some positive things that you can do.


4 thoughts on “Images of Women

  1. Hi, thank you so much for linking to my ‘don’t buy it’ blog!
    I randomly did a google search of my site and came across your site, which is funny because I only just saw what I presume is a comment from you on my blog. It was very nice to receive, because I have gotten a couple of negative comments lately. I look forward to looking at your site more closely in the near future, it seems really cool. 🙂

  2. Thanks Nadia,
    I got into the whole body image/stereotypes in advertising issue about 25 years ago when I was an undergrad. Too bad it’s still such a big issue, but good to see that people are still fighting it.

  3. great post. I ran into your blog looking for photos of venus of willendorf on google images. I like seeing it with the Benefits Supervisor Sleeping.

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