Friday, February 24, 2017
Week 7 - Artist Selection
The artist I chose is Bob Mizer (1922-1992). Mizer is a mid-20th century photographer whose work focuses on male bodies and the aesthetics of masculinity. Oftentimes, the subjects of his early photographs were hyper masculine, muscular young men captured mostly nude. During the time Mizer was producing his early work, the male nude was not only a controversial subject, it was a strict violation of obscenity laws. Nonetheless, Mizer continued producing his art, even finding himself in court for a short time for acting in defiance to these censorship laws. Moreover, his work challenged the restrictions of censorship and the boundaries of taste and acceptability during a time that the gay rights movement was just beginning. I was interested in this artist because of the impact his career had on the aesthetic of the male body and the discreetly homoerotic nature of his photographs. I also am interested in the ways he constructed a queered version of the ‘male gaze’, subverting the typical voyeurism of female bodies.