Feminist Porn and Tristan Taormino in Australia

Tristan TaorminoWe can sometimes feel a little isolated here at the Arse End Of The World. So often exciting things happen in the US, UK or Europe and we’re always a bit behind the times, like the slightly-embarrassing younger sister who tags along on your adventures even though she’s unfashionably dressed and makes tactless comments during Important Grownup Conversations that don’t concern her. We try to be cool in our own way but we’re not always successful.

This is why we get rather excited with international celebrities come to visit. We feel special. We feel validated. We hurriedly tidy up the living room and want desperately to impress our guests.

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So I’m hoping that well-known feminist pornographer Tristan Taormino is having a good time so far. She arrived in Sydney the other day and gave presentations at the Xplore Festival. This week she’s going to Melbourne where she’ll be talking about her filmmaking career at Pleasure Salon on the 11th and also giving a presentation on Open Relationships on the 12th. I’m happy to say I’m traveling down to attend the first session and I’m really looking forward to meeting her. I missed my chance last year when she was too ill to attend the Berlin Porn Film Festival.

Tristan’s arrival feels a little like a quickening for the local sex-positive porn community. Many of the Australian friends I know online will be attending the events in Melbourne and I’m really looking forward to finally putting faces to names and having a good chat with them.

Tristan’s visit has also inspired this article about feminist porn in The Age. Mentioned are friends Cyndi Darnell, Anna Brownfield and Liandra Dahl.

One of the best-known US sex educators, Taormino is in Melbourne this week to host a talk about her work and a seminar on open relationships. As a self-described ”feminist pornographer”, she’s also here to promote her craft and counter some misconceptions.

”These anti-porn feminists who say that 99 per cent of porn is violent and misogynist … clearly, they haven’t watched enough porn,” she says. ”I’m not denying that stuff is out there but to claim it represents the entire industry is a lie.”

Melbourne, she adds, has a reputation among her peers as ”a hotbed of radical sexuality”. Thanks to the efforts of local women such as Gala Vanting, Anna Brownfield and Liandra Dahl, it’s also considered a leader in ”feminist porn”.

I’m looking forward to my visit to our local hotbed of radical sexuality. Maybe I’ll see you there.

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