Risa Floating 3/6


  • From a limited edition of 6 archival photographs
  • Signed and numbered by artist A. K. Nicholas
  • Image: 30×20 inches/76×51 cm
  • Paper: 32×22 inches/81×56 cm


This is contemporary figure photography of a nude woman swimming. Risa’s unclad body is suspended in sparkling aegean blue. This Brazilian dancer and presumed daughter of a rock legend, epitomizes exotic confidence.

Dark hair frames her face, which is turned mostly away from us. Viewing under her chin, and especially under her nose is an atypical angle to illustrate feminine allure. This aspect provides a note of discord, but also one of distinction. Despite her head being tilted into the water at an unfamiliar angle, her features are beguiling. We see the underside of her chin along with one eye.

Her body and expression both seem relaxed. Light sparkles on the ripples and reflects off her immersed figure. Sparkling strands of white surround one side. Her shadow mutes these on the other side. The shadow shows the water to be shallow and clear. The progression from light to dark gives the otherwise still scene a sense of movement.

Voluptuous lines impart a feeling of luxury and hedonism. Warm sunlight and cool liquid form a dichotomy of blue and peach hues. The water around Risa seems to glow. Additionally, her rosy skin shines amidst the dark aqua and teal. Her outstretched arms, and legs crossed at the ankles, distinguish this pose. One hand breaks the surface, the other is distorted beneath the irregular surface.

She is plausibly oblivious to being viewed, making this composition somewhat voyeuristic. The sensuality of her snaking body enhance her curves. These factors all set the tone. However there is no missing her voluptuousness. The display is noticeably staged. This contemporary figure photography style is influenced by Helmut Newton and Ellen von Unwerth. Rather than building on the aesthetic of fashion, the figure is central.

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