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Contemporary food imagery: food porn and other visual trends


Taylor, N and Keating, M, Contemporary food imagery: food porn and other visual trends, Communication Research and Practice, 4, (3) pp. 307-323. ISSN 2204-1451 (2018) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2018 Australian and New Zealand Communication Association

DOI: doi:10.1080/22041451.2018.1482190


Within food media, especially within the digital domain, still images play a central role in communicating cultural meanings associated with the presentation and representation of food. However, limited attention has been given to how design, styling and photographic tropes of these images contribute to these meanings. This paper examines key pictorial elements of popular food imaging through the lens of visual art and art history in order to highlight their aesthetic and symbolic qualities. Using pictorial analysis, the research identified four stylistic frameworks and observed a continuum of imaging trends between popular and historical food representation. In this paper, we discuss key devices of each image framework and suggest that a pervasive strategy of creative disruption is used to create a sense of intimacy and draw the gaze through activating desire-based triggers to engage the viewer. This research also identified a normalisation of exaggerated styling in contemporary food imaging that has been typically associated with food porn and that the terminology previously used to describe this genre as erotic also suggests other attributes such as human aspiration and reassurance.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:food porn, food images, art history, Dutch still life painting, visual communication, food media
Research Division:Indigenous Studies
Research Group:Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture, language and history
Research Field:Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander music and performing arts
Objective Division:Culture and Society
Objective Group:Communication
Objective Field:Visual communication
UTAS Author:Taylor, N (Mr Nathan Taylor)
UTAS Author:Keating, M (Associate Professor Meg Keating)
ID Code:126090
Year Published:2018
Web of Science® Times Cited:12
Deposited By:Office of the School of Creative Arts and Media
Deposited On:2018-05-22
Last Modified:2018-12-07

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