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Mapplethorpe

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It’s an expensive way to learn about the intersection of art and pornography, but there’s no better guide to the issue than Mapplethorpe, a lavish collection of Robert Mapplethorpe’s photographs with an accompanying essay by the art critic and philosopher Arthur C. Danto. It was Mapplethorpe’s mission to create pictures that contained both the sexual excitement of pornography and the aesthetic power of art. Thus the extreme contrast between his subjects — often male practitioners of sadomasochism — and the chaste formalism of their portraits. Read, look, and learn. A