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Thursday, December 30, 2010

You Want Me To Do What With Who?

It's funny how we accept certain notions and modes of thought without ever questioning or challenging those ideas. Such is the case with the current state of "high fashion" photography.

Everyone knows that a lot of people in the fashion industry, i.e. photographers, editors, agents, models, stylists, designers, etc., are gay, yet still, in 2010, there is a definite embargo against fashion photography which is "too gay". The idea is that straight women are the customers of high fashion, and the ideas presented in the photo ads must reflect their tastes. Therefore, fashion ads can be incredibly sexual, as long as that sexuality presented is heterosexual. Okay, there is a lot of truth in that belief, but it's funny to watch photographers and the arbiters of fashion desperately crave and push for more gay imagery, knowing that they can dance right up to the line, but then can't cross it.


Take for instance this editorial called "Brute Camp" by the wildly talented photographer, Matthias Vriens, for S Magazine. One female model is surrounded by five muscular, horny men in speedos, and while it's obvious some of the men are clearly interested in each other, they instead turn their attention to the lone female and proceed to degrade her in a series of sexual games. And behold, the editorial is worshipped as one portraying real, cutting edge artistic style. But now turn the tables, and imagine if the lone female being used as a sexual pawn had been a male model instead. The legions of decency would have descended on S Magazine and called for their high-tech lynching. In other words, it's okay to portray a woman being gang-banged by five men, but there better not be any homo sex going on anywhere.

For the record, we love these photos, and we really love all of Matthias Vriens' work, but we're simply pointing out what a double-standard we still accept in our daily lives in 2010. America is okay with almost any kind of sexual behavior, as long as it's heterosexuality and not homosexuality.

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