INAMORATA - A set of photographs of adoration - by Martin Billings
The love a man and a woman have for each other is quite a spectacular thing. Throughout time the subject has been couched within religious and spiritual doctrines dominating life’s courageous existence, and establishing a virtuous society.
Photographically the event has not been explored enough. Artists have strived to capture it in paintings and sculpture. Tales, myths and legends examined and beautifully transposed into artwork conveying the essence of love between men and women. Cinematography has created more, but photographers since the nineteenth century have concentrated upon instant image-making of lifestyle, nudes, pornography, portraiture, land and seascapes, fantasy to fetish yet rarely submitting to the challenge of reflecting heterosexual adoration.
My approach has been to investigate how today’s picture-making is bereft of sensible images of passionate partners. How the young strain to be convinced their generation is all that must be portrayed when visceral, erotic portraiture is undertaken. The advertising industry revels in its ability to persuade customers through boy girl pictures to purchase perfume, fashion and luxury goods. But what about the simple fact that all ages adore love. How often do we see elderly or middle-aged folk clasped together, even naked, in closeness? As loathsome as they make it sound, the young dominate and influence older generations into avoiding all known reasons to be represented as in love. I guess we all have witnessed the female adolescent in particular screaming, “Agh, get a room”, or “Oh god that makes me want to be sick”, when faced with parents kissing or cuddling.
My INAMORATA portfolio is a short escape to a calmer adult and responsible world. One of maturity and adoration making this album of photographs a singular unique occasion in my opinion. A wonderful mature couple Penelope and Michael (pseudonyms to protect their identity); both in their forties, who possess the love for each other I was seeking, permitted me into their home to photograph them.
Martin Billings - 28th February 2011
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