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Photographing Girls
Julia Riddiough
Curated by A Brooks Art

Photographing Girls is a project by Julia Riddiough using archive imagery from pro-am photography manuals that utilise the male gaze and viewpoint to photograph women in order to sell products or just to look and consume women. This male gaze presents women through the lens of male objectification.

To gaze implies more than to look at – it signifies a psychological relationship of power, in which the gazer is superior to the object of the gaze.
Jonathan Schroeder (1998)

As we are told sex sells! But exactly what kind of sex sells? These images sell more than just the product they sell us concepts of sex and the positioning of sex using the women in these images. The viewpoint is nearly always from the heterosexual male and this can be seen as limiting as the women are seen as passive, available to the viewer and are not always respectful. The female is being projected as the male fantasy rather than showing a realistic portrayal of women.

By viewing these images again we travel back to a time when these images would not be challenged. Would we question them now or in fact question their contemporary versions? At a time when prominent men in the public eye are now being prosecuted for unacceptable behaviour that was deemed acceptable when these images were taken we see that they are still prevalent in our everyday lives and in plain sight pervading the media available to us. The media as commercial organisations use stereotypes to sell us things that we don’t really need and these stereotypes create a false sense of ourselves; how we see, how are able and allowed or made to see. Ultimately defining who we are and how we should live.

The proxy of looking is the authority to represent someone else in the act of looking. We are being sold a story that has been premised on pipe dreams and illusion. As Laura Mulvey states ‘the male viewpoint controls the viewing within the image and sets the spectator’s looking position’. In a world in which sexual attractiveness is built on subjective preferences, instead we see a flow of carefully constructed repetitive tropes, when a wider range of images could potentially free us to construct our own desires.

The hope that we might draw from history is that clear-eyed individuals can see beyond what is socially acceptable to what is morally right. If we get used to questioning even what is universally accepted, we might be able to avoid getting used to social norms that are well past their use by date.
Julian Baggini (2015)


ART LICKS WEEKND 1-4th October 2015

Exhibition dates: Friday 2nd – Sunday 4th October 11am – 6pm

Private View
Thursday 1st October 2015
6 – 9pm Private View
Art Licks Festival 2015
Doomed Gallery
65/67 Ridley Road
Dalston, London E8 2NP


Kiss & Tell Art Tour
4pm – 4.45pm Saturday 3rd October 2015
Doomed Gallery
65/67 Ridley Road
Dalston, London E8 2NP

Salacious and lewd gossip from Craig Hunt photographer and former assistant to renowned photographers Terry O’Neill and Tony Mcgee – spilling the stories behind the lens with artist Julia Riddiough. Join the conversation as they tour the Photographing Girls exhibition exploring the work and giving you the ‘Inside Leg’!

Exhibition Continues
Meet the artist of Photographing Girls Julia Riddiough
Friday 2nd – Sunday 4th October 2015
11am – 6pm
Doomed Gallery
65/67 Ridley Road
Dalston, London E8 2NP

Artist Bio

Julia Riddiough is an artist with an active interest in exploring and investigating the archive, looking at the space between fact and fiction, meaning and perception often referencing the representation and portrayal of women. Using found imagery as source material to edit and re-frame in different visual mediums including still and the moving image. Riddiough also engages in the debate that surrounds authorship and authenticity and the dilemmas these pose both to the author and the audience.

The Whitechapel Artist Book Fair (2011); Folkestone Triennial Fringe (2011/2014); Whitstable Biennale Satellite (2010/2012/2014); Multiplied Art Fair Christies (2011); The London Art Fair (2013); Deutsche Bank Works on Paper London (2013); WW Gallery London (2014); Exchange Rates, Brooklyn, (2014); Critical Practice, CCA UAL London (2015).