Friday, 4 March 2016

Helmut Newton - Artist Research

Photographers in the past have used disabilities as a fashion statement. This series of photographs by Photographer Helmut Newton, a well known fashion Photographer shows him using a model advertising shoes in different forms that imply a disability. From the wheelchair, to the leg brace, to a false leg.

There is not one mention in the article about disabilities, it is purely a marketing strategy for stiletto shoes. I find this sort of thing really difficult to judge because on the one hand, I do not like that an actual disabled person has not been used because it might not have fit into their style but on the other hand I like that it can be seen as making disabilities 'sexy'. 
I feel a lot of people get offended by images like this but to me, as someone with a disability, I believe any normalisation of disabilities is a good thing. I believe the more images of disabilities portrayed as being sexy and almost normal is a good thing.

We also have to remember that this was published in 1995 and since then we have progressed a lot, there are more disabled models, actors and actresses being shown in the media.
I believe that this piece was made knowing it would cause controversy though rather than their intentions being to make disabilities part of the norm. That I do not like.

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