ESSAYS: HISTORY

 

Film as a propaganda tool in the 20th century

 

Through the work of Architects, Critics & Film-makers.

BArch University of Nottingham,

 April 2015

Introduction 

Propaganda, can be defined as the capacity of a person to produce and disseminate “attractive” and reproducible messages that once seeded they will greatly influence human cultures.


The end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century were periods during which propagandistic activities flourished. The development of mass media along with unprecedented advances in transportation and communication, due to innovative new technologies that came with industrial revolution, resulted to the formation of mass audiences for propaganda, in all sectors and for different purposes. All different media such as print, films, radio and television contributed to this new era, offering their unique characteristics for exploitation. In this essay, I am going to focus on the particular use of film as a propaganda tool.


A propaganda film, can take either the form of a documentary film production or a fictional screenplay that aims at convincing the audience about certain issues. They can be driven by politics, social conflicts, environmental problems or simply personal incentives. Propagandistic content in films can be realistic so as to reflect actual problems and/or situations or specifically formed aiming at misleading large masses of the population on certain matters and alter their perception.

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Keywords: Propaganda, film-makers, architects, 20th century, social, political, Charlie Chaplin, Le Corbusier, Frank Lloyd Wright, Playtime, Metropolis

 

What are the controversies that can be caused by portraying nudity in Visual Arts?

 

A study in the work of Jeff Koons, Sally Mann and Helmut Newton.

Extended Essay, Moraitis School IB,

June 2012

Introduction 

This extended essay investigates the controversies that can be caused by portraying nudity in Visual Arts through a study in the work of Jeff Koons, Sally Mann and Helmut Newton. For this purpose, I read a variety of books and did extensive research so as to narrow my focus on the above artists and specific works. Hence, as my focus is on the portrayal of nudity, the essay begins with an overview of nudity in art, explaining basic concepts around it but also the reasons why sometimes it approaches the boundaries of pornography and hence the reason why it is such a controversial form of art.

 

The following three chapters mainly examine the work of the three artists that have been accused of exhibiting pornographic artworks since they portray nude figures. Consequently, every chapter focuses on each artist, presenting his motivations and intentions to create such controversial works, their personal interpretations, as well as my own of their works. Examples of their works are presented throughout the essay, most important of which are the “Ponies” by Jeff Koons and “Big Nude III Henrietta 1980” by Helmut Newton.

 

To conclude, I compare the three artists, in order to evaluate their work according to their intentions and how successful they manage to support them. This essay closes with a reasonable statement that people tend to have different views on what is pornographic in art and what is not which is the result of their differences in culture and ideologies and that in art, intentions and concepts are determining factors of what constitutes a consistent approach in art making.

Keywords: nudity, art, Jeff Koons, Sally Mann, social, political, Helmut Newton, concept, perspective, crossing-line, history, fashion.

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