Dressing for Pleasure is a 1977 film by the late Scottish documentary filmmaker John Samson. It is beautifully shot, with rich colours and textures, slow pans, and a soft look created by analog technology. It’s an objective take on the leather and latex culture which greatly influenced Britain’s punk scene. Footage from the film was used in numerous documentaries about the Sex Pistols, such as The Filth and the Fury, and a 1995 production by the BBC. While Samson’s work has often gone unappreciated, from both a film and fashion perspective, we can understand why he is finally starting to be recognized for his hard work and talent. Dressing for Pleasure captures through honest eyes a sensitive and important part of both fashion culture and sexual identity.
Free Pussy Riot: The Only Band That Matters in 2012
If you haven’t heard of Pussy Riot yet, you need to take action now! Tobi Vail (yes, of Bikini Kill) had much to say about members of the anonymous collective (who were jailed for protesting the conservative Russian government) as well as their outfits: “Their uniform not only disguises their identities, it congeals their individuality into a unified set of symbols. Their neon balaclavas clash with the individual pieces of clothing worn by each girl, but also express a visual unity. Bright purple, pink, green, red, yellow and blue; one girl’s tights clash with her dress, but match another girl’s balaclava, which match a third girl’s tights, whose balaclava matches the first girl’s dress, and so on. The result is an image that is striking and memorable.”
Thinking Kink: The Politics of BDSM Fashion
Catherine Scott at Bitch Magazine recently wrote this short piece about the place of clothing in BDSM culture. These kinds of interesting discussions happen on fetish community discussion boards all the time, so seeing it moved into a venue like Bitch is exciting.
Tom of Sinland (NSFW)
While we’re on the topic of S&M, we must bring your attention to these totally ridiculous (and awesome) drawings by Bendix Bauer for Horst Magazine. Playing off the works of legendary gay illustrator Tom of Finland, Bauer replaces the beefcake hunks of yesterday, with the gay fashion icons of today.
text by Jenna Danchuk
image by Denis Sinyakov/Reuters