Ah, yes. The Woodmans. I ran across Francesca's work before I knew anything about her, and I found them very intriguing. There are times when the context the back-story enhances the art. But sometimes I'd prefer to look at the images alone, and to make of them what I will. I still like her photos. There are some distasteful aspects to this film, however, not the least of which is the family lens.
You have a point there - that internal lens.
I have difficulty accepting a paternal presence in nudity. As father of one girl and granddad to two, I couldn't handle that at all. I'm not sure if it's a moral stance based on some kind of cultural/religious conditioning, or whether it's just a natural and genetic-level disapproval beyond conscious thought. It simply feels all wrong. My two granddaughters both have good figures and faces, but I have never felt able to photograph them even in their swimsuits. I simply won't go there; I'm so glad they never came to me saying shoot me, I want to try modelling! Maybe they would have felt the same barriers, too. I hope so. Sally Mann comes to mind; maybe it's different for a mother.
Perhaps it was the script - should there have been one - but it made me feel that both parents were quite removed, emotionally, from their child(ren). I also worked in the arts as a photographer, had a studio outwith the home which I eventually closed, only to feel obliged to build another several months later, alongside the family home, when studio-based work returned to me. The kids were in and out of the second one as they saw fit, often finding themselves obliged to stand in front of a roll of paper holding cards with 2.8, 4, 5.6, 8 etc written on them as I checked out flash meter and film realities. Sometimes they modelled for young fashion and back-to-school work. Result? They made some pocket money, the job got done, and nobody got hurt. I would never have dreamed of having family in any of my calendar work, even had they been old enough and talented enough to do it at the time - would have felt all wrong. You have to be able to feel totally removed from any personal connection - or at least, that's my take.
One video I saw about Francesca made the statement that she flew off that roof because she couldn't get into fashion magazines. With her style and treatment of whatever she or her friends wore, it's hardly surprising. Even fairly way out editiorials of the time did offer a crumb of comfort to the manufacturers and editors; it's too easy to think back to editorial photography and imagine it was all an ego trip; on the contrary, I think it was very brilliantly designed to cover both sides of the pitch: art and
sales, the reason d'κtre for all such magazines. She should have known that and made a portfolio to suit. Looking at videos can never really tell one enough about the artist: are the pictures chosen because they happen to fit within the genre for which that person becomes known? Did she also make other, commercially viable pictures? One can't really tell, so any opinion has to be a tentative one at best.
But, at least it lets us learn about other artists, and anything's better than an emotional/cultural vacuum.
Really liked your site and the work therein, by the way; nice clean design with both. Clean is a damned good quality to have.