Art nudes in paintings have witnessed varying degrees of acceptability in different cultures throughout history. It is true that the acceptability of nude art is largely influenced by the morality and aesthetics of the prevalent society. Also, certain cultures are more open to fine art nude than nudity in real life. Amazingnudegirls
Changing Depictions of Art Nudes
Nude art has always been prevalent in our society, starting in prehistoric times. However, the major difference is that while earlier it served religious purposes, it is now more about aesthetics.
Fine art nude generally refers to the depiction of artistic elements of nudity, rather than its provocative form (naked). In Europe, art nudes between the medieval period to the late 1800s almost never had any sexual overtones. In the 19th century France, where nudity was quite prevalent, classical nudity was acceptable to the general public.
The earliest depiction of the nude male form in classical art dates back to the fifth century BC, and the female form to the late classical period in Greek art. Archaic Greek art represented deities and heroes in heroic nudity, which continued in the Roman and classical periods. Even the Renaissance and Pre-Raphaelite artists depicted the beauty and sensuality of the human form.
However, the changing societal attitudes changed the perception of art nudes. For example, the famous Renaissance paintings of Michel Angelo were covered with fig leaves to protest against art nudes. Also, the Western society is perceived to be less open to accepting art nudes than other societies.
Different Roles of Male and Female Nudes
Since the early days, male and female nudes played different roles. While the male nude in Greek art symbolized ideal and real-life heroes, and the homoeroticism of the society, female nudes usually depicted the goddess of love, Aphrodite. This difference arose from the inappropriateness associated with the depiction of nude female forms. In fact, this double standard in fine art nude continues to this day.