The first example of the naked is Lucian Freud's Naked Man, Back View, 1991-2. What defines the naked in this example? Firstly, this is a body that has been lived in. The man is heavy with rolls of cellulite typical of many in our society. Muscles are evident in his calves, thighs, and his back. The softening of these muscles and areas of cellulite define an age-specific individual. Is the anatomy (bones and muscles) biologically correct? Yes.

THIS NEEDS TO BE LIGHTENED A LITTLE

Obviously, only a minimal amount of bone is evident (shoulder blades, kneecaps, ankles) as the layers of fat obscure the skeletal system. Proportion: Befitting his weight, the head is small, and his back, sides, and buttocks are large. Accurate? Yes. Mass: subtle hills and valley are seen in the lower back, butt crease and leg. An actual model in the studio? He is older (age specific) as evidenced in his balding head and thinning gray hair. There are discolorations in his flesh as the color tone varies from brighter white to tan to peach to yellow. Within the low value valleys of his lower back, there may be body hair. The texture of the body seems clammy or wet, as if with perspIration. Again, this is a real body, the naked truth. Note: the model even faces away from the viewer, reflecting the sense of shame experienced by Adam and Eve.

IN THIS BOX INSERT “WYETH VIRGIN” 

 The second example is Andrew Wyeth’s The Virgin, 1969. What defines the “naked” here? The woman has just washed her hair (or else she desperately needs to). We can see individual strands, which curve across her cheek and over her shoulder. Her eye is small, nose large, and lips small. Her body is husky with sagging breasts and exhibits a soft and fleshy roundness with the stomach, hips, and thighs. Her feet are short and wide.

 

Firstly, this is a body that has been lived in. Her hair is ragged, breasts show age, and there is an odd stripe of lighter coloration across the hips and groin suggesting a sunburn. Is this an actual model in the studio? She is age specific and the details in the hair, flesh and the discoloration prove that this represents the “naked.” Again, the model is facing away from the viewer.