His formal innovations in photography have few equals, and a favourite subject for his lens was the female form, a traditional artistic genre. However, in his struggle to push the boundaries of the avant garde and further offend the notions of 'good taste' among the bourgeoisie, the imagery seems to move from 'artistic' to lewd. I can't help feeling Man Ray was really a smutter at heart.
Perhaps the best answer to our original question came from the great Marshall McLuhan:
"Art is whatever you can get away with".
|Not sure what it is - it must be art!|
|Yes, definitely art|
|Crikey! Looks like smut!|
|Smut. Good honest smut.|