Monday, April 28, 2008

Vanity Fair exlploiting a minor

As you know, I am an art photographer who takes artistic nude and semi-nude photographs. All my subjects are at least 18 years of age, have presented me with a photo id and signed a model release. I have NEVER taken or have even thought about taking an exploitive photograph of a child in my over 20 year career. I have been shooting for over 20 years and have respected the photography of Annie Leibovitz as long as I can remember, but I think her notoriety has affected her judgment. The photography she recently shot of Miley Cyrus for Vanity Fair Magazine is in very poor taste. If any other photographer would have photographed a 15 year old in this manner they would be out of business in minutes and probably brought up on child pornography charges. But since she is the photographer to the stars she can get away with this. I do believe the image is artistic in nature but it is lacking any good judgment. Both Leibovitz and Vanity Fair are exploiting this young girl for money pure and simple. To say that it was shot digital and her handlers were on the set is their way of saying, she could have said No. But if you say no to Vanity Fair or Annie Leibovitz, you better kiss your career goodbye.

I am ashamed that they stooped as low as this and hope the young lady's reputation isn't ruined because of a photographer's ego.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

A Little About Me

Well, I figured since I am writing this blog it might be nice for those of you reading it to know a little more about me, so here it is:

Artist’s Statement:
I have been shooting the nude figure since the first time I picked up a camera for an Introduction to Photography class in college. To me, the nude represents the complexity of what it is to be human – from the most flawed to the most beautiful. Recently, my work has evolved from mere explorations of the human form to attempts to connect with the subject more intimately to reveal the variety of the human condition, from joy to despair, from sensual to erotic.

Artist’s Biography:
Michael Barone has been a working artist since his teens. His medium changed to photography at the University of Delaware, where he was awarded a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Photography in 1984. He works from his Bucks County studio and his work has been shown in galleries throughout the northeast.

Recently Barone’s work has been featured on the website for the National Coalition against Censorship, which commented, “…Barone's nudes are documents of great relevance. What is obscene? What is sexual? What is repression? These are issues Barone addresses through his skillful silver halides pieces that from darkness and light unveil flesh, sexuality, inhibition and conflict.”


17th Annual "On the Mall" Art Show Egg Harbor Township, NJ Purchase Award

22nd Annual National Indian Summer Art Show Art Show Atlantic City, NJ - First Prize, Photography

26th Annual Atlantic City on the Boardwalk National Professional Fine Arts Show - Juried Show
Ocean City Art Center Ocean City, NJ - Juried Show

Fetishes Boutique Philadelphia, PA - Solo Exhibition

Grendel’s Den, University City, Philadelphia, PA - Solo Exhibition

Halcyon Gallery, Philadelphia, PA - 2 person exhibition
Coalition for Sexual Freedom Art Auction, Boston, MA
Midlantic Gallery Arts Consortium, Perkasie, PA - Solo Exhibition "Parental Advisory"
DaVinci Art Alliance Philadelphia, PA - Solo Exhibition "Parental Advisory"

Philadelphia Center for the Photographic Image Philadelphia, PA - Juried Show
Nexus Gallery, Philadelphia, PA - Jured Exhibition "City Paper Photo '06"

Katie Stauffer Memorial Art Center Richlandtown, PA - First prize, photography
Side Tracks Gallery, New Hope, PA - Group Exhibition "Naked in New Hope"

Greenshire Arts Consortium, Quakertown, PA - Group Exhibition "Heart of Peace" Opens May 2nd

So there is me, the artist, in a nutshell!

Monday, April 21, 2008

The Heart of Peace Exhibition

In keeping with the last posting about the war, I'd like to mention an exhibit that I am very proud to be a part of. The exhibition "The Heart of Peace" is being presented by the Greenshire Arts Consortium.
The inspiration for this mixed-media exhibition comes from the understanding that humanity and our earth community share unique commonalities, with peace and love often being the thread that weaves together this genuine connection.
The exhibition runs from May 2 - 25, 2008 with the Opening Reception and Peace Garden Dedication on May 2, Friday Evening, 6pm - 9pm
Exhibiting Artists Include: James Ambrogi, Alix von Auenmueller, Claudia Balant, Michael Barone, Lesta Bertoia, Ron Bevilacqua, Janet Bishop, Audrey Clymer, Edna Dollin, Wendy Ellsworth, Patricia Goodrich, Marianne Knipe, Scott Ogburn and Ruth Rosenfeld.

Please come out and support the arts and this peace initiative. It would be great to see some familiar faces at the opening.
For more information visit Greenshire's website at

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Mad as Hell

I was watching Boston Legal the other night and was reminded of a quote from the movie "Network", I am as mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anymore. Great quote, in the movie it was about corruption in the TV news industry, but it resonates today with the state of our country.
I am old enough to remember Viet Nam and some of the protesting that went on in the late 60's and early 70's. I remember my denim jacket that had a patch on it, Make Love, Not War. It was right next to my Apollo 13 patch. I was 8 years old. Now we have been at war for what seems like forever, a decidedly unpopular war. I am not sure what wars are popular, but a war none the less that is ugly and tearing apart this country and others around the world. And yet I see no protests. OK, maybe the little group of women on Saturday morning with their signs, a couple hundred protesters once in a while in Washington. But nothing like the rallies of the late 60's.
As an artist I make statements in hopes that people will see them, take note and maybe change their thoughts about the war and our current state of affairs. And in that I feel like I will have done my part. I AM mad as hell, but why isn't anyone else. And if they are, why so quiet. Bruce Springsteen's newest CD has some strong anti-war songs and for a brief period of time he got some flack for it. But that has passed and the songs are still not played. The strongest song on the CD "Magic" has the refrain

"Who'll be the last to die for a mistake
The last to die for a mistake
Whose blood will spill, whose heart will break
Who'll be the last to die, for a mistake"

He got mad as hell and did his part, will you?

Last to Die Lyrics

Monday, April 14, 2008

The Red Chair...continues

This week looks like it will mark a milestone for me as I am about to reach 50 participants for my Red Chair project. There is a previous blog post about it but in short I can say that it is about how materialistic our society has gotten. Our society values what you have more then who you are. Because of this I want to show that beneath it all, beneath what we have bought, we are all the same. The Red Chair acts like a common ground where my participants pose nude in front of my camera. We sit and talk all the while I am taking photographs. From this session I pick one image that I feel that represents you.
I am now at the half way point and really am looking for 50 more people, normal everyday people, to sit in my chair. You will compensated with an 8x10 copy of the image I choose and also have the satisfaction of being apart of something that may make people take notice that no matter what we have we are all the same and all part of the human race.

For more info visit

Friday, April 4, 2008

Most Influential me

From time to time I have been ask who has influenced me as an artist. I mention Michelangelo and Leonardo DaVinci as very big influences in the way I see the human form. But as a photographer my biggest revelation came in 1988 when I was fortunate enough to see the exhibition, "The Perfect Moment" by Robert Mapplethorpe. Viewing this exhibition with my infant daughter in a stroller, I was taken back by the freedom of expression, the beautiful lines and tones that he created. And by the sheer guts he had as an artist to shoot and print some of his works. So many people have judged him unjustly from what the press said about him after his death but until you actually see his works in person don't judge. You should visit his foundations website at Take a look and tell me what you see.

Till next time .....

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Call for Couples

Hi all, well it's April Fool's day so I figured I'd post this today since people think I am a fool for attempting this photo project especially in this day and age and while I am still working on my Red Chair. Which, by the way, should hit 50 participants very soon!
I am looking for real, loving sensual couples in all sexualities to pose for me together without reservations and show their passion for each other. My "Lovers" series has already begun and I am now looking to expand it. So if your not shy about being a sexual being also doing so in front of a camera, let me know.

Care to help?