Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Petra Collins: A Young Female Photographer of Nymphets

I went to the Capricious gallery in New York's Chinatown last week to see 21-year-old Petra Collins' Discharge, which was Collins' first solo exhibit.

According to a Village Voice article, Collins "... addresses the insecurities and angst of the female teenage experience through her artworks ...The photographs depict young women in various intimate scenes...many of the works deal aggressively with the physical changes of female adolescence."

According to the Capricious' website Collins has been "... creating provocative work that deals with female sexuality and teenagehood since the ready age of fifteen."
The gallery relates that Collins is:

  • founder and curator of The Ardorous, an online art collective showcasing work by emerging female artists
  • a staff photographer at Rookie, Tavi Gevinson’s magazine for teenage girls 
  • a casting director for Richard Kern [a photographer of nymphets]
  • the writer and directer of two films “The Crimson Crusade” and “Pussy Power”, two subversive shorts that focus on reclaiming female sexuality, and 
  • the curator of an all-female art show titled Gynolandscape
Despite Collins' raunchy teen content, she:

  • began giving lectures on art and female sexuality at educational and art institutions such as York University and The Art Gallery of Ontario
  • was profiled by the New York Times as a cultural influencer 
  • has work that has been featured in publications like VICE, Oyster, Vogue Italia, GARAGE, and Purple
  • was named one of Canada’s top 30 artists under 30 by Blouin Artinfo, and 
  • is currently working on a book of photography to be printed by Random House in 2015

The fact that the above institutions and personalities support and praise Collins' work is a testament to the extensive allure of nymphets. But her photography does blur the line between art and teen (softcore) pornography.

The Photography of Petra Collins

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