The Full Body Project

Matisse Circle

Matisse Circle

In another attempt to make myself appear worldly and cultural (a persona I won’t be able to keep up for long…), I present to you more brilliant fat photography: The Full Body Project by Leonard Nimoy.

In the artist’s words:

This current body of work is a departure for me. For a number of years, I have been producing images using the female figure. I have worked with numerous models who were professional people earning their living by posing, acting, dancing, or any combination thereof. But, as has been pointed out to me in discussions at exhibitions of my work, the people in these pictures always fell under the umbrella of a certain body type. I’ll call it a “classic” look. Always within range of the current social consensus of what is “beautiful.”

These women [in The Full Body Project] are interested in “fat liberation.” They hold jobs in the theater, the film industry and in business—and together they perform in a burlesque presentation called “Fat Bottom Revue.”

Their self-esteem is strong. One of them has a degree in anthropology and will tell you that ideas of beauty and sexuality are “culture bound”—that these ideas are not universal or fixed, and that they vary and fluctuate depending on place and time. They will tell you that too many people suffer because the body they live in is not the body you find in the fashion magazines.

With these new images, I am now hearing different words. Sometimes “beautiful,” but with a different sub-text. I hear comments, which lead to questions. The questions lead to discussions—about beauty, social acceptability, plastic surgery, our culture and health. In these pictures these women are proudly wearing their own skin. They respect themselves and I hope that my images convey that to others.



It’s a wonderful project, with many of the photographs looking so joyous. Clickety click your way over there.

The NY Times did an interview with Nimoy about this project, his work in general and the size acceptance movement. The bulk of the article is rather good, if you’re able to ignore the totally unnecessary sentence “He doesn’t necessarily find them sexually attractive.” THANKS FOR CLEARING THAT UP, NY TIMES.

All pictures reproduced with permission courtesy of R. Michelson Galleries


4 Responses to “The Full Body Project”

  1. 1 MarcustheWu 1 July, 2009 at 2:50 pm

    I did not read the article, but a large part of me thinks that it is awesome that the article mentioned that he was not sexual attracted to the women. It is a good example that you do not have to earn visability by being attractive, or that you do not have to find certain types of women beautiful in order to listen to their story.

    • 2 Frances 1 July, 2009 at 3:25 pm

      The sentence followed a question about fat fetishes. I understand your point and I agree that a woman’s worth should not equate to sexual attractiveness. What annoys me is that they had to mention it at all – it’s a brilliant art project, but because it features naked fat women, they have to bring up fetishes…?! What’s the point?

      • 3 MarcustheWu 1 July, 2009 at 5:46 pm

        Ok, I have read the article now. I totally agree with you. In my perfect world, there would e no reason to mention fat fetishism in an article about fat women, but unfortunately, I do see why they felt the need to ask that. Many people reading about his work would have that question, because most people suck. hahaha So I see why they mention it, and I like his response to the question. I think my brain is just focused on the fact that I think it is a good example of what I mentioned in my earlier post. But yeah, I totally see your point.

  2. 4 Jennifer 21 July, 2009 at 4:49 am

    Ah, I know someone who is in those photos! I’m glad to see it mentioned!

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