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Carla van de Puttelaar –by Elizabeth Avedon


Almost 500 years ago, Lucas Cranach the Elder painted Venus as a full-length female nude. She stands against a black background, clad only in her jewelry. Dutch born photographer, Carla van de Puttelaar’s recent full-length nudes mirror Cranach’s Venus, pale bodies posed against a black background, that seem to hover motionless above their ground. To van de Puttelaar, each portrait is, in a sense, a self-portrait as she relates to her models as a woman. Images that are beautifully composed, have been influenced by a range of Flemish artists of the 15th and 16 Century. Van de Puttelaar recently told photo-eye Gallery’s Anne Kelly,“I felt myself strongly connected with the Old Masters and I am now working as a researcher in Dutch Old Masters as well as being an artist myself.”

In her recently released Cranach Series by Carla van de Puttelaar (photo-eye Editions), her extremely revealing, mildly erotic nudes, seem to keep their own personal distance from the viewer. Van de Puttelaar has stated her “nudes draw heavily on the use of close up effects and the use, or deliberate non-use, of focus. Moles, as well as bruises or the imprint of underwear in the skin enhance the intimacy of the picture, loading it with tension. Distance is being created first and foremost by the use of color. Often, the skin will have a porcelain glance, delicate, fragile. Color also creates a sculptural feel, elaborated by the light and framing of the compositions.”

Elizabeth Avedon

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