DAZED: On a mission to destigmatise sex work

The Berlin Strippers Collective wants a radical overhaul of the sex industry. This short film takes you inside the defiant, enchanting world of the Dazed 100ers, as they read their manifesto – an urgent demand for the decriminalization and destigmatization of sex work.

Written by Brit Dawson
Video by Carys Huws

“Sex work is a hot topic, but you hardly see sex workers taking ownership of their own narrative,” declare the Berlin Strippers Collective (BSC). “To be autonomous, self-organised, and make collective decisions around how and who we work with is radical.”

Born out of a frustration with the power imbalance between sex workers, managers, and owners, as well as a “common desire to see things done differently”, BSC are on a mission to overhaul the sex industry. As well as fighting for better working conditions and more autonomy over their work, the political and creative group are demanding an end to the wider criminalisation and stigmatisation of sex work.

With strip clubs closed for seven months over lockdown, the 12 members of BSC had time to galvanise and organise – a feat that didn’t go unnoticed. Since their establishment in November 2019, the collective have amassed over 10k Instagram followers, collaborated with other art and sex worker collectives (including their sister collective, the East London Strippers Collective, who were part of the takeover of FKA twigs’ Instagram last year), and joined the line-up of the 2021 Dazed 100. The group also run regular life drawing sessions and online cabaret-striptease shows, which, they tell Dazed, “have encouraged us to be more creative with how we perform”.

Our events bring our world close to the audience, who can then relate to our problems, identify with us, and find points in common.

An activism that succeeds in giving a face to sex workers, humanising them, and creating a bond between them and non-sex workers is the first step towards destigmatisation.

Online Article – dazeddigital.com
2nd July 21

Credits:

Director and photographer – Carys Huws

Creative producer – Eugenia Vicari 

Director of photography – Svenja Trierscheid 

VFX, edit, and grade – John Malcolm Moore at Cascade Berlin

Stylist – Fabiana Vardaro 

Hair stylist – Kosuke Ikeuchi 

Make-up artist for Chiqui, Vivi, Suki, and Edie – Gianluca Venerdini using Byredo via Karla Otto and Make Up Forever

Make-up artist for Trixie, Josie, Mia, and Fifi – Anri Omori using Chanel Beauty

Gaffer – Ulrike von Au 

Music supervisor – Lucy Cook

Music and mix – Felix Godden at Cascade Berlin 

Sound recordist and production assistant – Isabelle Schmitz

Production assistant and BTS videographer – Agostina Cerdan

Styling assistant – Filomena Ianniciello 

Starring:

Chiqui Love, Suki Sky, Mia Onacid, Trixie Delight, Edie Montana, Fifi Tinker, Josi(e) J FoxXx, Vivi Sugar

Fashion:

Vivi Sugar: body DSTM, chain body Namilia, earrings APHER 

Fifi Tinker: legwear DSTM, tops Andrea Adamo

Suki Sky: top Lou de Betoly, string Saqua Studio, earrings Apher

Mia Onacid: corset Adriana Hot Couture, top Saqua Studio, headpiece Autrement Pr

Josi(e) J FoxXx: whole look Namilia

Edie Montana: top Namilia, panties DSTM

Chiqui Love: body Kasia Kusharska, harness and shorts Saqua Studio

Trixie Delight: body Lou de Betoly

With special thanks to: 

SEE YOU RENT, no.odds, Ramboya Studio, Delight Rental Services

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