Ana Voog bubbles in my email:
Three camgirls from the old school camming (ana: Ana Voog, beautifultoxin: Melissa Gira, artvamp: Echo Transgression) together for one night only!And you'll never guess where!
I adore Ana. She's - complex. She sends out these amazing email alerts - generally copied to her livejournal - with the most amazing photos that could be her, naked as a jaybird, or a roadkill jaybird. Or a mannikin with one of her hats on it. So unless the keyboard is totally on fire, I generally read them pretty quick. I wish I'd gotten to this one even quicker.
I dunno if she realizes what an inspiration she is to me; she's a living reminder that you will not be struck by lightning - even in the midwest - by being who you are, all at once. So many artists keep their porn secret - and surprisingly enough, many pornographers and pornbunnies hide their art.
But ana is out to make you think. Most days. And her work - and the work of others - are a medium that is being taken more seriously, both as art, and of course as an artform that has something immediate and relevant to say about our culture and it's hipocracaies.
I of course dropped in on www.sexworkmatters.net and found it to be depressingly not sexy. They are Terribly Serious About All Of This.
$pread presents Sex Worker Visions, an exhibition featuring art by sex workers and about the sex industry, at the LGBT Community Center David Bohnett Cyber Center at 208 West 13th Street, New York City, from March 29 – May 20. Visions
kicks off with an opening reception on March 29 from 6 to 9 pm.
Visions is curated by Audacia Ray, Executive Editor of $pread and former Assistant Curator at the Museum of Sex. Artists include sex activist and educator Heather Corinna, former SuicideGirl and illustrator Molly Crabapple, exotic dancer and photographer Charise Isis, and former prostitute and
filmmaker Anne Hanavan, as well as Paul Sarkis and George Pitts’ intimate portraits of porn stars. Photographs by Erin Siegal and illustrations by Fly and Cristy Road originally appearing in $pread will also be on display. Sales will benefit the non-profit magazine.
The March 29 event is also the opening night of the Sex Work Matters conference, a joint venture of CUNY and the New School (http://www.sexworkmatters.net). The evening
also marks $pread's one year anniversary, and the Spring issue of the magazine will be available for sale at the reception.
For opening night only, the exhibit will be completely interactive with a webcam video project, “30 Second Sex,” masterminded by multimedia artist and erotic
professional Melissa Gira http://www.sacredwhore.org) and featuring webcam pioneers Ana Voog (http://www.anacam.com) and Echo Transgression (http://www.artvamp.com) camming from remote locations. Computer monitors around the Cyber Center will display the websites of sex worker rights advocacy groups for the public to peruse. Former call girl Tracy Quan along with sex worker activist
Carol Leigh (aka Scarlot Harlot: http://www.unrepentantwhore.com/) will be signing copies of their respective books, Diary of a Married Call Girl and Unrepentant Whore.
WHAT: Sex Worker Visions opening reception
WHERE: LGBT Community Center’s David Bohnett Cyber Center, 208 W. 13 St., NYC
WHEN: 6–9 PM
At the activist and academic levels, the dialogue on sex work has divided primarily into two opposing positions. The anti-porn/anti-trafficking movement views all sex work as exploitative and coerced and therefore to be erradicated, while the 'sex work as work' position advocates that sex work be recognized as a legitimate profession with the accompanying legal protections. The latter movement explores the diversity and contradictions of the sex industry involving issues of gender, race, class and capitalist economy.There have been a lot of closets kicked open since the Stonewall Riots, and even now, our kids on Myspace are rushing ahead of our boomer and GenX comfort zones in sharing and oversharing in the same way Ana does; all of their interests, instead of in little boxes with carefully selected, pre-screened friends who were carefully segregated from our other friends.
New York City is home to numerous scholars, activists and analysts engaged in the debate over sex work as work. Students and younger activists are also demonstrating a growing interest in the topic, as evidenced by their increasing involvement in activist organizations. Artists too, continue to challenge conceptual boundaries about sex work and ownership of the body in their work. Despite this growing interest, few forums bring these groups together.
The Sex Work Matters project aims to fill this gap by giving scholars, activists and analysts a platform for multidisciplinary, cross-institutional exchange of ideas and networking. The project brings diverse perspectives and experiences together to explore the theoretical, sociological, political and economic dimensions of sex work in a globalized world. At the same time, it provides a much-needed opportunity for graduate students and activists to enter the debate, present original work and identify areas for collaboration.
Perhaps "oversharing" is safer in the long run than the "what will people think" sort of fear I grew up with.
Some damn bruising interactons with sexual abuse survivors tells me one thing, though.
Ignorance is NOT bliss, nor is it innocence. Knowing a lot more about the opposite, or interesting same sex can keep you away from "those people" a lot more effectively than isolation from all those "bad influences."
Because, statisticly, "those people" are often known as "Uncle Fred." I'll tell you, there would be a LOT less child sexual abuse if the abusers realized that the transcript - and perhaps photos - would be up on the kid's livejournal or Myspace the next day for critical review.
Of course, that may be why possessio of evidence - I mean, child porn, is illegal even for the victim.
Would saying "especially" be too damn cynical of me?