Brooke, Ladder


  • From a limited edition of 6 gelatin silver photographs + 2 artist’s proofs
  • Signed and numbered by artist A. K. Nicholas
  • Image: 22×18 inches/56×46 cm
  • Paper: 24×20 inches/61x51cm

Black and white photography nude

This is traditional black and white photography of a nude woman, hand produced in a darkroom through wet-chemical processing. Enlarged from a black and white 120 film negative, shot on a Hasselblad 500C/M film camera, no computers were involved.

A nude woman clings to an A-frame ladder. Her familiar pose as well as her pleasant facial expression and eye contact allude to conventional pin-up.

However, the entire right half of the image is left jarringly blank, while the ladder and the subject’s body form a condensed zig-zag within the left half. No line in the image aligns with the outer frame, and her hand, just out of view at the top, only heightens curiosity about the incongruity of this composition. The framing, although obviously premeditated feels haphazard. It is an act of visual rebelion, flaunting convention.

Bright light radiates from the background, with the subject’s right side almost blending into the wall. However, subtle shadows reveal the contours of her body, and a few dark areas provide just enough contrast.

Brooke is completely nude except for a key hung around her neck. An echo of Fourth of July swimwear is visible through tanlines. With nothing left hidden, this image is explicit as the subject flaunts her hourglass figure and invites the viewer in with her subtle smile and direct eye contact. Her legs cross as she aligns both feet on one rung of the ladder. Her left arm bends to rest her hand behind her head while her other arm extends, holding her pose.

Her curvy, organic form contrasts against the nearly empty planes of the background and the angular, industrial ladder. The key around her neck hints that she is a keeper of secrets and leaves the viewer to speculate what it might unlock. A wall outlet and three small boxes break up the negative space behind her with small points of interest.

This black and white photography nude, emphasizes the grainy retro motif achieved by shooting this image on film. The lack of color and the sparse scene keep the focus on the subject’s form, with the lines of the ladder repeatedly drawing the eye back to her body.

Signed and numbered on the front with archival ink. Dated on the back with graphite. This is a hand-produced artwork on natural fiber paper, slight variations in the edges and corners are normal.

Shipped flat in a Masterpak or equivalent double-walled, lined industry-standard art shipping container. This item may require additional processing time before shipment.

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