40 years of mommy panties (NSFW)

I don’t know what art is anymore. Especially when it comes to women. There’s a performance artist who simulates birth with paint, in public, creating paintings by “delivering” the colors onto canvas from eggs stuffed inside her vagina. (Don’t look.)

Then there’s this woman, who is far less grotesque but still baffling. She’s a photographer. Every year, on her birthday I presume, she arranges for a self portrait, always bare breasted, sometimes with members of her family, sometimes alone. Like this:

Nice but for the... you know.

Nice but for the, you know, giant panties.

Thing is, she keeps at it. All the way into her sixties. It’s clear she’s not modest. Like, there’s this one:

Which is, if not actively weird, not modest.

Which is, if not actively weird, not modest either. Is that her dad? Don’t tell me.

There’s not much in the way of explanation. She just does it year after year. And I have to admit I’m wondering, not about the exhibitionism per se, which I can understand, but why 40 years of mommy panties?

Bikinis okay. Nothing, better. Dare I say more artistic?

Bikinis, okay. Thong, better. Nothing, best. Dare I say more artistic? Unless you prefer l’orteil du dromedaire.

It’s not exactly as if she’s all about coverup.

Very little left to the imagination, actually.

Very little left to the imagination, actually.

Is that the art? It’s not finally about her at all but about mommy panties? Do they mean something? Symbolize something? Tell us something we desperately need to know?

I give up. Help me see what’s going on here. If you can. She’s 67 now.

Liking her persistence is not the same thing as understanding it.

Liking her persistence is not the same thing as understanding it.

Oh well. Life is deeply mysterious. But not as mysterious as women. People who think they know all the secrets of the universe should bear this in mind. Women are always out of this world.

The hardliners keep wanting proof. They think science applies. It doesn’t. Here is the proof of that. Whatever you do, don’t look at it.

I TOLD you not to look at it. The way people are. Men can’t wait to look at it and, having been warned, couldn’t possibly be deterred. The women, having been warned and told not to look, have to look BECAUSE they’ve been told not to look. And then they’re both disgusted and outraged. On this dichotomy hangs all the friction between the sexes. They see the same things, for different reasons, and have exactly opposite reactions.

Why we keep going round and round in our beautiful dance together. Only God knows how and why we still manage to snuggle. But we do, don’t we? Now, if we could just solve the mommy panty problem, all would be right with the world. Is that the challenge being posed by a lifetime of strange photographs? Lose the damn panties?

Sigh. Hell if I know.

But I guess there’s always hope. A millennial put it to me succinctly the other day. “I believe in God because BREASTS.” Hard to refute. I feel much the same way, although my logic is different… because VAGINAS. Either way, something in red is a good idea.

Sometimes life is simpler than it seems.

  1. Alfa’s avatar

    I don’t understand the photos and I understand those panties even less.

    This is art? Oh that’s right, it’s 20th Century art.

    Reply

  2. Instapunk’s avatar

    Thanks, but I’m still in the dark as much as before. Is there anybody out there who can explain…?

    Reply

  3. Barbara’s avatar

    Must there be an explanation? I’m bowled over that she kept the same pair of panties for at least four decades (we all wore panties like that in the mid-20th Century; have you forgotten?) and that her breasts look better at age 67 than they did in her youth. There are many who reach old age with lesser achievements.

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  4. Edna’s avatar

    She wore that type of panties at the start, they were available and cheaper than the other types. Got them in packs at TG&Y.
    She started the pictures that way and needed them to stay the same so that the stupid people would know it was her every time. They are the connecting device.
    Or
    She wanted work in underwear sales, thought they looked good on her, thought they would clinch the job!

    I still don’t think it is ART.

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  5. Edna’s avatar

    p.s.
    She has really ugly knees.
    I know you did not notice.

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    1. Tim’s avatar

      Haha! I did not notice, Edna, but you’re right. How did I miss that? Oh yeah…

      Reply

    2. Barbara’s avatar

      Were she a beautiful woman with good legs it would not be art, don’t you understand? It would merely be silly self indulgence.

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    3. Instapunk’s avatar

      All right, Barbara. You finally said it. What makes it art is that it’s not really a sexual statement although it uses sexual imagery. I DID notice that her legs aren’t great, not necessarily her knees, but she was not saying admire me. She was saying see me. A different thing altogether.

      The persistence of it is to say I am still here. Vulnerable but indomitable. Women hide their breasts because breasts are their softness, the thing most likely to be exploited and used against them.

      Of course it’s art. If we had the whole series, we could morph one into another and see a montage of life. Curiously alone but still here, still here, still here, still here, still here.

      I understand the mommy panties too. They tend to bisect her body. They’re the wrong thing in every picture. What does that mean? It’s clever. A comment on society’s demand to cover and obscure the core of female sexuality while it hungers for the sensation of fulsome femaleness.

      We want the candy but not the complications of what happens “down there,” periods and childbirth and all the details of things called female troubles.

      So, throughout history, women have presented the former and concealed the latter.

      The first picture is the one that proves my point. The driftwood looks like a priapic dragon. She even holds a leash.

      The women have been good sports checking in. Now it’s time for the men to say what they think. The mommy panties represent a kind of chastity belt. A deliberate anti-sexualization. A “you don’t want to know” declaration. She knows what goes on down there. Infections, blood, abortions, babies, and sometimes ecstasy, including odors and secretions which men frequently respond to by turning their backs.

      Mommy panties are, in this context, armor. I am a mother. The other dimension of my sexual allure. All the complications you don’t want to know about, can never understand. So I show you only the half of me you are capable of understanding and appreciating. Even so, still here. Aging like a fine wine or an endlessly fecund tree.

      So. Guys. Ante up. Asked a friend of notorious ribaldry to comment. He’s silent. Truth is, guys are probably more troubled by these pics than women. Women aren’t modest at all. One of the great fallacies. It’s men who confuse their desire to see with some ability to perceive.

      Not the same thing. Why I posted this. It’s not a joke. It’s a challenge. Not to women, but to men.

      Reply

      1. Tim’s avatar

        I’d be more convinced if this analysis came from the lady herself instead of you, RL. I think you’re giving her too much credit.

        Reply

        1. Instapunk’s avatar

          You could react on your own. I was trying to show how it might be done. Part of my fading idealism is that men want to understand women. Where else does the poetry gene come from? But experience keeps hammering me. Players, husbands — especially husbands — regard them as a subordinate and repellent species.

          There are excellent women. Do you know any? Know OF any? Life changing.

          This woman has not the gift of poetry. But she made of herself an art. Think of comedians. Male comics comment on life and such. Female comics play a part, the girl they wish they weren’t. Or the girl they wish they were.

          But here is a woman, immanent, who just says, “I am here.” Year after year. Can you not contemplate that for a moment?

          Men are never in any time. They are in the past in their high school days, the faster car they’ll buy next month, or in the future of their plans for career advancement, in the nowhere of the NFL couch, which is never now but what happens next quarter, next game… While the woman is saying, “Now, now, now, now, where are you?”

          Women are awful. Almost all of them. Men are awful. All of them. All the time. Is it so hard to put ourselves in their shoes for just a few minutes at a time?

          Of course. Impossible. Sorry I mentioned it. Won’t happen again.

          Until next time.

          Reply

        2. Edna’s avatar

          The women I know cover their delightful parts because nothing hurts like insect bites on soft tissue and scratching in public is frowned upon. you try living a useful life with delicate parts exposed to : hot grease, bugs, weird leering guys, grabbing children and playful puppies.
          I have great boobs and they need constant protection from almost everything.
          I have a scar from a cigarette that was dropped by me after a bath!
          You are right her pictures do yell “Me, me, me, me” and she is using these to establish her longevity, but I still don’t think it is art.
          I do like your description of how you see these pictures I just don’t think anyone would have been as attentive if she were wearing some clothes.
          My hubby said “I only looked because I said she was mostly naked, if she were wearing clothes I wouldn’t look pass the first few.’ He is a barbarian!

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        3. Instapunk’s avatar

          I’m a barbarian too. But I know art when I see it. It makes me think not shrug or sneer. And I’m very good at sneering.

          Reply

          1. Instapunk’s avatar

            No. I wouldn’t have been as attentive if she were wearing clothes. That’s not a bad thing. It’s a true thing. Women not wearing clothes is what keeps men alive. It’s not perversion. It’s the basis of everything. How civilization got made. As women progressively hid it, men got more accomplished. But that’s a whole other essay.

            Reply

          2. Edna’s avatar

            RL
            I confess after thinking about it that I must apologize for my flippant manner.
            It is art, if we go with the meaning that it “affects” us in some manner. I look at art as something someone made with their own hands (my opinion) . All she did was put a frame around something that someone (God) made. I failed to see the things you saw in Her pictures.
            My first thought when I looked at these pictures was “get out of the way lady, I want to see the view.” I guess I tend to “see” things but I often don’t really look at them.
            So this must be ART since I have been giving a lot of thought about your comments and your point of view. Thank you for your contribution to my education, you made me think!
            * Maybe you are the art!

            Reply

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