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Ryan McGinley: Animal Innocence

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Obviously, provocation is a well-known art. In photography, abusing it can be risky, occasionally bordering on ridiculous. By associating the themes of human nudity and animal innocence in Animals, Ryan McGinley, the youngest photographer to have his personal works featured at the Whitney Museum of American Art, took that risk. The pictures of Animals reveal a perfect balance: elements, compositions and colors, but are lacking the surprise factor. One must admit, the stares and movements of the animals, associated with the nude bodies, intentionally placed on pubic zones, teach us nothing. Worse, nearly using them as objects, Ryan McGinley risks removing their dignity. Even if certain pictures are endearing, Animals is a series whose pictures seeking to be disturbing merely leave a bad taste. Simply because his last pictures are the result of a grotesque mise en scène that seem to take their inspiration from advertising. A very talented photographer capable of immortalizing the body, Ryan McGinley seems here to have lost his way.

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