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Pro-queer, pro-feministа.а.а.
The Art Nerd Porn Collective comes to Boston
BY NINA MACLAUGHLIN

From 'Breakfast at Zuzu's'


"We’re fucking in public and turning the private inside out," says Hannah of the Art Nerd Porn Collective, a four-month-old Philadelphia-based squad bent on making pornographic films. Old-fashioned exhibitionism, however, is not the main, uh, thrust behind eight-person group. Every member of the Collective, ranging in age from 19 to 30, "identifies as smart, queer, and feminist," says Hannah over the phone from Philadelphia. "And what motivated us to start making porn was that the stuff we were seeing wasn’t representing our fantasies and perversions." The Collective brings its intelligent, pro-queer, pro-feminist porn to Jamaica Plain’s Milky Way this Sunday.

This work reflects the members’ particular preferences — "It’s about what we each individually think is hot," says Hannah. For some members, "making pop culture queer is really hot." One Art Nerd film, "BYOC," plays dirty with The O.C., Fox’s trash-gloss heir to Beverly Hills 90210, turning the show "deliciously on its head." Porn that’s "queer," Hannah continues, "means a wide range of things. Queer encompasses all the possibilities and permutations of gender and sexual expression, and that’s part of why it’s so hot."

But the sexiest aspect of the Collective’s porn? "It’s the irony and humor." Finally! Porn for the people who get hard for humor and wet with the thought of po-mo porno and self-referential skin flicks! "There’s a real sense of humor and joy in our work, and an incredible commentary on pop culture and porn in general." It’s not just for nerds, though, and should not be classified as erotica for the Mensa set. Indeed, the group object to the term erotica to describe their work. "That’s not what we’re about," Hannah insists. "We’re making porn."

How graphic the films are varies from project to project. Their body of work ranges "from a 30-second movie on fisting to make-out porn with mostly groping." "On the Make" was inspired by a film Hannah saw on the West Coast "of a bunch of queers making out at a party." The Collective sent out invitations and filmed hours of a make-out party. "There were all kinds of people, and there was such a sexy energy in the room." One of the group’s members has "an obsession with titty fucking and did a solo titty fucking project as well as a longer piece called ‘Breakfast at Zuzu’s’а" that’s a "meditation" on the same topic. The Collective has also made a series of "quick and gritty" 30-second pieces in which, it’s safe to say, the emphasis is not on plot.

One of Art Nerd’s goals is to instigate conversation and inspire other people. Hannah acknowledges that what whips the Collective’s cream isn’t necessarily going to get everyone going, "so we hope they’ll pick up a camera and make their own." Future plans remain focused on "making porn and sparking conversation. We’ve got so many ideas — it’s like a snowball of porn — and we feel like we’ve barely begun."

The Art Nerd Porn Collective’s work screens this Sunday, February 22, at 8 p.m. at the Milky Way, 403-405 Centre Street in Jamaica Plain, as part of Truth Serum Production’s Fiery February series. Cover is $8; call (617) 524-3740 or visit www.truthserum.org.


Issue Date: February 20 - 26, 2004
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