Wednesday 5 February 2014


In a recent article in the Guardian about strippers (here), the journalist wrote,
Once a month, there's a life drawing class in the White Horse. Both women and men turn up to produce lopsided drawings of pole dancers. Theoretically, while the strip club might be in jeopardy under new proposals, the class would be safe. Watching a naked woman hang upside down by her leg is acceptable as long as the purpose is not "sexual stimulation". The two situations are seen as so disparate that the one is a focus of fury, the other a quirky but genteel pastime.
So it seems that a dancer moving is sexually stimulating but if she stays still for a life drawing class then she is no longer sexually stimulating. Watch out Suki - don't move or you might be closed down!

It reminded me of the old Windmill Theatre. There the dancers had to be still in a tableau when they were naked so as not to get closed down by the Lord Chamberlain. There too the naked body, if still, was regarded as being artistic as naked statues were not regarded as being morally unacceptable. But if they dared to move ... !

So I wonder if still nude photography may be artistic, but if one makes a video then it will become sexually stimulating and classified as porn?

Here is a recent photograph of Suki keeping very, very still. (The projected words are from one of her poems. Suki is a writer really.)

1 comment:

  1. A fellow life-model, Esther Bunting (see her ace blog at, says the real problem is, club managers ripping off dancers: "Sexy dancing can be an empowering job; unfortunately very few clubs of that sort are run by ethically minded folk."

    But what interests me the most is her comment that "if you go to shows at fetish clubs, you feel a lot more confident that the performers are wholly respected for their art."

    I do agree with this. As I understand it, fetish contexts - just as with life modelling contexts - are about an aesthetic. The power-dynamic is consciously set up. Parameters are set and respected. It's not about money and exploitation. It's an intellectual activity. Everybody involved is appreciative of each other.

    This sounds like I do modelling at fetish clubs, doesn't it? I don't. But out of my experiences of modelling for artists, I have become interested in the dynamics at work in the 'fetish' world.

    Isn't being naked in a clothed world endlessly fascinating! (-: