|From the virgin soil, a rich harvest !|
Back in April 2011 I did an article on The Polaroid Amateur, which to this day remains one of the most popular posts on this blog. That post, like most of what I stick on here, was inspired primarily by a whim but my attraction to the imagery was (is) based on the feeling of spontaneity that many of them possess. Since then I’ve been interested in how “amateur porn” manifested itself in other cultures and I’ve done a bit of research; mind you, this blog is dedicated to visual arts rather than psychobabble, so I’ll gladly spare you the latter but links are provided at the bottom of the page as always.
The people of the Soviet Union did not have access to Polaroid instant cameras until 1989, but both amateur and commercial erotica certainly existed despite the political denial. And Political Denial was rife. I experimented with various ideas for this, but in the end decided to let both ends of the spectrum speak for themselves, visually.
I’ve done my best to distinguish true amateur photos from commercial stuff. The photography, to the best of my knowledge, dates from the late 1960’s through the early 1980’s.
“In the C.C.C.P., sex was the ultimate taboo topic. No one talked
about it and it was somehow considered unpatriotic to want to discuss or
participate in sexual activity of any kind.“
|Bread – Homeland!|
international telecasts between Soviet and U.S. viewers, performed by
group of communication enthusiasts during late Cold War era. During one
show an American asked about sex in the Soviet Union, and Liudmila
“There is no sex in USSR“.
Ms. Ivanova had intended to say “There is no sex in the USSR, there is love” but the last words were cut off of the broadcast. It has since become something of a catchphrase.
(Below) Corn- a source of plenty.
“With the collapse of the Soviet Republic, the Russian people went nearly
overnight from never seeing erotic imagery on display to being
completely surrounded by it. “
Work Well, the Bread Will Grow!
I Love You, Life !
Let’s Build Thoroughly!
early nineties, and sex soon became a way of life. Many did not know how
to handle this new freedom, and so STDs began to proliferate, sexual
violence and prostitution increased, and the abortion rate rose
that the West was suddenly no longer the arch-enemy, and now that
images of western sexuality were free to enter the country, sex became
fashionable and exotic.”
|Field Work Is Not Waiting!|
|You too will be a hero!|
Paul W. Goldschmidt; Pornography in Russia
Culture. (Eros i pornografiia v russkoi kul’ture) Edited by M.
Levitt and A. Toporkov. Moscow: Ladomir, 1999.