In that quest for meaning we find the joy of the sensual body as an erotic vehicle for self-expression.
The Sophie Dahl's advertisement for Yves Saint Laurent' s Opium perfume is an excellent example of Advertising as art. It follows the artistic tradition of Delacroix, Ingres and the Oriental nudes. Her provocative pose goes a little too far so it is considered to be part of Shock Advertising. It was banned by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) when it first appeared as posters in 2000, but it still remains in the minds of many viewers as an astounding example of advertising as a way of expressing all the eroticism of a beautiful woman in an orgasmic pose. It attracts the viewers' eyes with the provocative figure of Sophie Dahl lying on a cushion just wearing a necklace, earrings, a bracelet and high heels. The typeface helps a lot in giving the scene an atmosphere of elegance, beauty and sensuality.
In this essay we will study Advertising as art taking the Sophie Dahl's advertisement as a guide. We will take a look at the following topics: Sophie Dahl, Opium perfume, the nude advertisement, shock advertising, Advertising as art, nude paintings by Delacroix, Ingres and the Orientals, and decoding the advertisement. ...
Let's see the model behind the advertisement! Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) Director General Christopher Graham told Paul Taylor from Manchester Online his impression when he first saw the Opium perfume ad featuring a naked Sophie Dahl:
"I am taking my kids to school and I am confronted by Sophie Dahl in a flight of sexual ecstasy," says Graham. "That's OK in a women's magazine, surrounded by ads for perfume and lingerie, but on a 48-sheet poster outside the local primary school, it's a problem. We upheld the complaints and it had to come down. It was the second most complained-of ad ever." (Taylor, 2004).
The uproar caused by this ad is really very impressive mostly because of the medium where it was displayed. Sophie Dahl was born September 15, 1979, in England. Her father is the actor Julian Holloway, her grandmother is actress Patricia Neal, and her grandfather is the prolific novelist Roald Dahl. She always wanted to be a writer like her grandfather or maybe a movie actress like her father (Sophie-Dahl.Com, n.d.a).
Sophie says: "I don't think I could be a wallflower with a body like this," () referring to her outgoing nature and her six foot, size 14 figure. At 21, Sophie has been credited with helping to bring back the curves into Nineties fashion, mesmerising designers like Karl Lagerfeld and Jean-Paul Gaultier with her voluptuous Fifties look." (Sophie-Dahl.Com, n.d.b).
Sophie was the inspiration of one famous character in the novel The Big Friendly Giant (BFG) by her grandfather.
"During her childhood she moved constantly from Los Angeles to her boarding school in the English countryside. Her unstable lifestyle led her to bouts of teenage depression and anorexia. One night in 1996 she was