Fall 2014 BFA Exhibition
Jim Cauthen, Boise State UniversityFollow
archival pigment print
Dimensions: 20” x 16"
As a photographer, and gay man, I have always found myself drawn to the work of artists such as Bruce Weber and Howard Roffman, whose somewhat-staged yet candid-feeling images of the male form evoke a heightened sense of sexuality and youthful beauty. Similar to Weber and Roffman, imagery from companies like Abercrombie & Fitch and Hollister have also aided in the development of my artistic style. Both of these photographers and companies strategically use a variety of settings, lighting, locations and scenarios that excite our interest, and ultimately sell products. In today’s business world, more today than ever, sex sells.
Shooting with medium format black-and-white film on a Hasselblad camera allows me to create scenes in a manner that captures my subjects in the best possible light, as well as to achieve the desired aesthetic look and feel that emulates my favorite art and fashion photographers. Digitally scanning, then printing the images via an archival pigment process, enables me to present my ideas on a larger scale while maintaining the classic, nostalgic “film look” I desire. The result is finely crafted, yet timeless imagery that is as raw and organic as the subjects they represent.
In this series my creative vision of the male form presents the viewer with glimpses of the day-to-day musings of the typical college-aged male. These captured scenes invite the viewer to be a part of a moment of amusement – a moment of surprise – a moment of bliss. As in the advertising campaigns of Abercrombie & Fitch and Hollister, I strive to choose scenarios and levels of undress that reveal the sensuality of my subjects; but my approach is subtler – more personal. My subjects engage the viewer with a playful confidence, and acknowledge the viewer’s gaze. Unlike these advertising campaigns, my intent is not to sell a product, but to lightly touch on the notions of youth and nostalgia, taking the viewer back to his or her younger, more carefree days; letting them walk away with fond memories of the past, and a smile for the present.
© Jim Cauthen, 2014.
Since January 15, 2015
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