On a crisp Sunday morning June 1the nude protesters lay down on the road, covering their genitals with large images of male nipples. Yet, if Facebook and Instagram want to be platforms for artists, they need to modify their current overbroad ban on photographic nudity, which harms artists who work with the human body, especially those exploring issues of gender and identity.
We urge the company to adopt an art-friendly policy developed with the help of a group of global stakeholders, such as arts advocates, historians, curators and artists.
Activism laid bare: a quick history of naked protests
The protest has the support of over artists and organisations that signed the porn mamme letter, from Nude Parenthood to the Writers Guild. We understand that nudity can be shared for a variety of reasons, including as a form of protest, to raise awareness about a cause, or for educational or medical reasons. Where such intent is clear, we make allowances for the content.
Tunick has been photographing mass protest photo stunts for almost three decades in public places around the world.
60 Top Naked Protest Pictures, Photos, & Images - Getty Images
His more recent shoot in Melbourne, Australia saw people photographed naked on a car park roof. I never know, when I post, whether they're going to take it down. Protest has to be done. Nude have way more power than they should.
125 People Posed Nude in Front of Facebook's New York Office to Protest Its Ban on Female Nipples
Artists who lack access to traditional distribution channels can reach global viewers as never before. Museums and art protest are able to broaden access to their collections and promote exhibitions on an unprecedented scale.
Yet Facebook and Instagram, while permitting nudity in sculpture and painting, ban photographic representations of the nude body. The nudity ban is punishing for photographers and particularly harms artists whose work focuses on their own bodies, including nude and gender nonconforming artists.