Festival of Sex Work, Melbourne
‘I have to ask, are they real?’ ‘Can I see your scars?’ ‘Do you mind if I touch them?’
In the sex industry, strippers have developed wry, witty and cutting replies to this predictable, invasive and unsolicited probing into one’s medical history. ‘Real expensive’ says a fellow showgirl. ‘They’re unreal’, says another. ‘Nothing this good comes for free’ says a former Miss Nude Australia. Well, they’re real in a corporeal sense, says Penthouse Pet of the Year Ashlee Adams – ‘They’re not imaginary.’ This work – of the artist’s breasts two hours before surgery – documents just one point in a journey through countless discussions about feminism, normativity, body modification and entitlement to women’s bodies.