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Pandemonium  •  29 July 2021  •  Showcase

Lust Slut

By Frances Harvey
Content Warning: Sexual references, misogyny
Lust Slut

The LUST SLUT collection explores notions of female sexuality, with a deep focus on Victorian-era pornography. Erotic art has been pivotal to the history and culture of numerous nations and ethnicities, contributing to much of their artistic output. However, with the obscenity laws and restrictions that came about in Britain in the late 19th century, the abhorration of nudity and ‘pornography’ was born.

The Western world continues to have a confusing relationship with the female form, maternal health, and anatomical understandings of the reproductive system. Female sexuality and self-pleasure have a turbulent history deserving of acknowledgment and appreciation. Why are vanity and selfishness associated with self-generated nude photos of women, yet similar work by male artists is revered?
To this day we continue to shame and discourage female sexual empowerment, using words like ‘slut’ and ‘whore’ to diminish a woman’s sexual worth. This collection seeks to re-appropriate these terms in more meaningful and powerful ways.

Using second-hand textiles and domestic influences, this collection critiques traditional interpretations of female sexuality and blends the past with the contemporary. Through digitally generated imagery and the exploration of Victorian erotic photography, bodies are explored on and off the textile pieces, which adds dimensionality to the collection. Self-generated poetry was a central driver to the design process and features in many of the prints. These poems evoke the chaos, uncertainty, and messiness of sexual awakening and the journey of self-identity.

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