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May 19, 2000 04:45pm
Appeals Court Rules on Nude Photos
Source: AP

(NEW YORK, NY) -- A federal appeals court ruled Friday that a photographer has a First Amendment right to assemble a large group of nude people on a street to take their picture.

The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled 2-1 that Spencer Tunick was within his rights to take a photo of 100 nude people in Manhattan one morning in July.

A judge had ruled in favor of Tunick but the appeals court stayed his findings until the appeal was resolved. As a result, Tunick took a photograph of clothed bodies instead.

Tunick lawyer Ron Kuby called the ruling ``quite a nice victory'' over the administration of Mayor Rudolph Giuliani.

``Spencer was ecstatic. He's already printing up invitations for the next nude photo shoot,'' Kuby said.

Kuby said Tunick was planning to photograph nude bodies at 5:16 a.m. on June 4. The only thing that could stop the shoot would be an appeal by the city, Kuby said.

``In light of the new kinder, gentler, softer Rudy ... perhaps the city will drop it,'' he said. ``Who knows. Perhaps the mayor will participate.''

A message left with a city lawyer was not returned.

Tunick in the past has taken many photographs of large groups of nude people in public places, including the streets and bridges of New York.

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