Am I The Only One Who Is Kind Of Turned On By These Portraits Of Men In Their Girlfriends’ Clothes?

portraitsAnother day, another rad art project about gender. In an effort to explore the changing dynamics of heterosexual relationships, Spanish photographer Jon Uriarte has taken some striking portraits of men in their girlfriends’ clothes. But unlike the makeup project I discussed recently, this project is more about “masculinity” (and what that even means anymore) than the daily performance expectations placed upon feminized bodies. Writes Uriarte:

“The men under the influence…”adresses the recent change in roles in heterosexual relationships from the relationships of our predecessors and how those changes have affected men in particular. the photos attempt to capture men’s sense of loss reference, now that women have taken a step forward and have finally come into their own as equal partners. The project consists of full-lenght portraits of men wearing the clothes of their girlfriends or wifes, taken in the space shared by the couple.

Given this mission, it makes sense to photograph men in women’s clothing, since nobody blinks an eye anymore when heterosexual women wear, say, pants, but it’s still considered bizarre for a straight man to wear women’s clothing, despite the fact that many male “transvestites” are sexually attracted to women.

It seems like the photos are supposed to be lighthearted, but I sense a certain eroticism to them as well; these are not just men in women’s clothing, but men in the clothing of the women they love, posing in the spaces that they share. How is that not intimate as shit? Granted, I’ve always had a bit of a thing for male crossdressers (I blame The Rocky Horror Picture Show), but even if the subjects feel more silly than sexy, these photos read as something a bit deeper. What if, instead of a “loss of reference,” they might represent something gained? After all, it’s one of feminism’s goals to open up more avenues of expression to everyone, not just women. I know the right wing likes to view us as destroyers of their precious long held traditions, but I fail to see how “making more genders,” as rad-fem thinker Silvia Federici advocates, could do anything but give people more options, not fewer. (I mean, the old ones are still there for anyone who wants them.) The fact that some of the men look quite normal in their girlfriends’ clothing shows that this is already starting to happen.

(Via Flavorwire)

Photos: Jon Uriarte

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    • Samantha

      I love this even more than the make-up photo series. There definitely is something strangely intimate about it. I like that some of the poses say more about the woman we don’t see and how she’s perceived by the man wearing her clothes.

    • Lastango

      I can’t help but notice that these are all young, slim, good-looking men. Could that have a teensy something to do with your positive reaction?

      I can see why you like it politically, as part of the effort to deconstruct masculinity so it can be reconstructed in a way that suits your socia-political agenda. Naturally, you present that as benign, and as a doorway to new possibilities.

      • jamiepeck

        Please explain how it is damaging society to give people more than two options for gender expression. I’ll wait.

      • Lastango

        Nice try… according to you, it falls to me to explain why destroying masculinity is damaging. And unless I do so, you and your tribe are free to destroy it.

      • jamiepeck

        If traditional masculinity gets “destroyed” when people are given a choice in the matter, maybe it wasn’t that great to begin with.

      • Lastango

        You don’t intend to give people a choice in the matter. You’re a Marxist. Razing the culture to the ground lets you set up your own, unchallengeable power structures. There’s gonna be a lot of broken eggs on the way to your omelet.

      • KathleenCat

        I wish I could give you about 100 likes on this.

    • anna

      I never have had much of a reaction to men in woman’s clothing, mostly because my fiancee wears a skirt (a manly skirt) and steals all my more androgynous tops. my reactions are mostly oh, i was looking for that shirt!
      but it might be the setting? i find it not so much erotic as just i feel like i know these couples. it’s very fascinating.

    • Sean

      I’m impressed they actually fit into their partner’s clothes. The only time I’m allowed to come anywhere near her clothes is when she wants my help stretching out a t-shirt.

      • KathleenCat

        I saw that they tried to put on the shoes too- some just kind of putting their toes in-and shuddered at the idea of a man even trying to put his toes in the front of a pair of my shoes, as most women’s feet are bigger than mine, let alone men’s. I briefly feared for my shoes, even though I don’t have a boyfriend (or girlfriend).

      • MR

        Yeah, it’s nuts to the point of sounding Republican. I like to look at a woman I’m dating trying on clothes – when she wants to ask me if like one dress versus another or anthing else she wants to put on, when she’s getting ready to go out with me on a date.

    • Charmless

      I appreciate that they went for a relatively subtle approach, perhaps with the exception of the gent in the spaghetti-strap sundress. It would be very easy to go over-the-top and make the entire concept look comical. Instead, it’s thought-provoking. I feel like the guys are honoring their partners in some way. They’re not making a mockery of the experience because it’s novel to wear ladies’ clothes.

      There’s way too much of a size discrepancy between me and my dude for this to ever work for us. One busted seam on a vintage dress and I’d slap him with divorce papers.

      • KathleenCat

        I hear you on the vintage dress thing. I could just picture it. When I’ve dated men, I never ended up with any close to my size. Not that this would have been all that easy to find, so that’s part of it. But still, I hear you.

      • KathleenCat

        I hear you on the vintage dress thing. I could just picture it. When I’ve dated men, I never ended up with any close to my size. Not that this would have been all that easy to find, so that’s part of it. But still, I hear you.