A post, by Kim Satchell
From the mind of Kim Satchell (whose mind should NEVER be taken lightly!)
What is the appeal of these gendered beach scenes? Well…there’s Shag’s uber-fifties aesthetic of course. The psychedelic use of colour and the graphic poetics of stylised familiarities. The playful referencing of Venus di milo in the statuesque women whose coding registers subliminally with male fantasies and other fairy tales. The subtle affirmation of the micro bikini as a fashion statement and equipment essential for summer beach scenes. In terms of surfboard design there is nothing adventurous just a series of mini mals. However a celebration of pigments and tints (which I guess you expect from an obsessed graphic artist). Finally the leitmotif of the California Sun as electric cool-aid.
And now, a word from the mind of Rebecca Olive…
Satch emailed me this post and called to let me know that he was sending it and we chatted for a bit about it this afternoon. He offered me the right to respond, to speak back to his own words and the images he had sent me in relation to this post – to add, critique it, to love, to hate it – so I think I will say something, mostly because of my reaction to the Jay Alders image the other day. Because I don’t want folk to make the mistake of thinking that I am of the belief that curvy, shapely, lady bodies in bikinis are at all annoying, offensive or to be universally shunned as sexist. Quel horreur!! Not in the slightest. These images by Shag are fun in the ways they place women in the action, on the beach, in the water AND with faces, expressions and personalities. Feminine and fun, graphic and playful – these women on the beach look like the kinds of women that populate my own life. And let’s face it – it’s fun to get around in little more than swimmers. I love it, I’m chronic for it and I’m usually the last one to get fully dressed again after a surf in the summer. These images are cute and fun, playing as much with male stereotypes and bodies as with female ones. And they make me pine for warmer, drier days than I am suffering now… Thanks for sending them through Mr Satch!