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Women take their tops off so autism gets full exposure

By Laurel Stowell

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Don't be surprised if you see someone taking photographs of topless women in Wanganui's public places.

What started as a way for James Price to draw attention to autism has become a busy Facebook page with many photographs of naked backs.

Mr Price's son, Tyler, was diagnosed with autism in 2008, at the age of 4. Mr Price had known something was different about the little boy, but had never heard of Autism Spectrum Disorders and had to do some research.

Understanding of the disorder and how it made people different was what his son seemed to need the most, and Mr Price chose photographs of sexy backs to draw attention to it.

A trained photographer, he made a calendar of sexy backs for Autism New Zealand in 2010. He's carried on taking pictures of sexy backs, but now puts them on Facebook.

Those photographed get a copy, and every new image on the page includes an autism fact and pulls in viewers. Some pictures link to an online autism support group.

Lately Mr Price has added interest by taking the photographs in Wanganui locations - the Aramoho Railway Bridge, the tower atop the Durie Hill Elevator.

The page had 11,000 visits last week, with 76 per cent from women aged 18 to 45.

It was not there to make money but to get attention, he said, and he couldn't explain its popularity: "People love it. It's weird."

Sisters Stacey and Alana Denman volunteered to pose because it was a cool idea and a good cause.

"The photos are classily done. It's art. They are modest and very tasteful," one sister said.

To see more, go to www.jamesprice.co.nz

- WANGANUI CHRONICLE

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