by Stanislava Georgieva
Theaters of Prey
An Exterior Analis of Gentlemen Clubs
The Great Alaskan Bush CO
“……The only thing you get out of a strip club is an empty wallet and blue balls. People that love strip clubs are either mafia types, college guys that cant get laid or old creepy men whose wives stopped sleeping with them 20 years ago…..”
Andy. H, Brooklyn, NY
“I once talked to their boss (a woman) who told me flat out: "We sell dreams to lonely losers and horny boys that will never come true. There will never be a shortage of them."
“Strip clubs are designed for one reason and one reason only: to separate men from their money. They do this by selling a fantasy.”
Gentlemen’s Club, Live Adult Entertainment, Exotic Entertainment, Exotic Dancing Bar, Rest Lounge or Strip club and no matter what they are really called are places where usually men are the audience and women are the performers. These places are part of today’s culture in America. They are everywhere and around places that we least expect to come across. They are almost invisible to the commuter, but at the same time their exterior architecture is kitschy and distasteful enough to make you stare at them and wonder what is the business inside, which raises a lot of questions about their function and their need to the contemporary society. It’s a billion dollar industry, where more money are spent there than in any other entertainment business.
To show the real “glow” of the exotic bars the images are photographed during the day, when they look very ordinary and as part of our daily life. This is the part of the day when the curtain between reality and illusion is pulled out and all the illusions about the world inside are destroyed. The photographic images are visual observation of the outside architecture that makes social commentary on this kind of adult entertainment business. The photographs represent the realistic outside look of these places with the labels that create the illusion of a great sexual experience inside. All the titles of the “gentlemen’s clubs” have double meaning and suggestion of a sexual pleasure that is associated to the men’s sexual fantasy.
The titles of these places are the most interesting concept of this social documentary concept. They capture the imaginary character of the places, they are created to attract the visitors, it’s like a “trap” for them to get into the dreamy world inside - the scenario of the play and to bite from the forbidden fruit. Through this way of advertising, these places sell fantasy for men who want to escape from the reality of the everyday life with the hope to get something that will give them satisfaction - like the image of a female body. However, the independent contractor also is looking for her prey as well. They both hunt each other in this dramatic performance that one has been seduced by the other.