One project which has been commanding my attention recently and something I really should have written about here weeks ago is the fight for the display of artistic nudity on Facebook. I read several posts lasts year in which artists expressed upset after they were blocked from their accounts following the reporting of their work, and indeed experienced upset myself as images from the summers adventures with Happy Slap Boutique were taken down from the company page. In January Tia Adams of Paint the Body, an amazing artist, was blocked from her page yet again after her wonderful work was repeatedly flagged as inappropriate - it really upset me to see such a wonderful artist feeling picked on and bullied simply for sharing her beautiful work so I decided to start up a little page where people can show their support for artists like Tia and discuss policy changes that could benefit the whole Facebook community.
So far not a single day has passed without at least one person joining the cause and some days we've manged over 90 new additions which is both exciting and incredibly encouraging! It's also bringing to attention numerous cases where people feel their work has been removed unfairly and are not given the option of appealing the decision. The images in question - at least those I've seen so far - are so blatantly artistic in intent and so far removed from anything I would consider sexually explicit or pornographic that their flagging as inappropriate just seems ludicrous. One recent example that I think deserves mention involves the wonderful Yolanda Bartram from Body FX who I worked with at the Sydney IMATS last year. She was locked out of her account for a week following a nipple protest in which she posted an image of....get ready for this - prosthetic nipples!! Yes that's right, barred from her account for fake nipples... Of course with over a billion people now registered to the site any image is bound to disagree with someone somewhere - however I'm convinced that there are ways for artists/photographers/models to share their work AND for those who are offended by skin to be protected from seeing this work and being upset in the first place.... If you think bodypainting and other displays of artistic nudity have a rightful place on Facebook please show your support and join us at www.facebook.com/bodypaintingappeal - with enough of us (over 7000 to be exact) we really can influence change :) See you there!