Sally Mann's Exploitation Of Her Children

1073 Words5 Pages
Sally Mann is one of photography’s most acclaimed artists, and through her work of portraiture has captured beautiful, mystical and provoking images. Her series Immediate Family, released in 1989, caused much controversy over the content of that series. The images contained snapshots of her children living out their lives. Yet these images sometimes depicted bloody, sometimes dirty and sometimes nude scenes, which raised alarm in the photography world. In turn, this made everyone think of her works as pedophiliac. “Mann has been accused of building her reputation [as an artist] on the exploitation of her children” (Higonnet, 403). Despite critics’ destructive interpretations of her work, I strongly believe that Mann embodies both the ideal characteristics of a feminist artist and being a good mother to her children. Not only has Mann made a huge impact in the arts, creating a female aesthetic through “the violation of a gender role,” but she also manages to find a median between her work and her children, ultimately combining the latter to produce a collaborative relationship to encapsulate one of the greatest themes of American art: family (Higonnet, 417). Sally Mann…show more content…
In addition to creating a new female aesthetic and a place for women in the arts, her children were highly involved with the creative process which occurred. I believe this was a project between a mother and her children, and due to the process being placed into the limelight with its success, received raised eyebrows because of the confident nature of the project. I have looked at Mann’s photographs and I see them as a family album; yes the images are extreme, but they still hold a sense of tenderness. I believe the images are maternal, but the argument will never be concluded as with new people comes new

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