By Ray Stern
By Ray Stern
By New Times
By Amy Silverman
By Stephen Lemons
By Stephen Lemons
By Monica Alonzo
By Chris Parker
Now that I've spewed my venom, I can tell the tale of Jett and me rolling on Alwun House's 21st annual "Exotic" art gala, featuring 60 different artists and their erotic paintings, drawings, performances, etc. In case you just landed here in Gila monster country, or have been sleeping under a saguaro for the past three decades, Alwun is a two-story, nonprofit gallery/performance space at 12th Street and Roosevelt run by its eccentric, live-in directors Dana Johnson and Kim Moody. Each year, freaks line up in droves to drink bubbly by the bottle, eat cookies shaped like dicks, watch strippers and performance artists do their thing, and peep some naughty art.
When I arrive, the party is two hours into its freaknik, having started (you guessed it) at 8 p.m. Inside are 600 or so skimpily dressed Phoenicians, so naturally I am having difficulty locating Jett, though I figure she may be the one who's more than half-clothed. As I stroll into the backyard, an auburn-haired pimpette in a man's jacket with no top on underneath passes by me, giving my balls a playful squeeze and sticking her tongue out, Ying Yang Twins-style. I'm tempted to follow, but I don't relish the thought of getting fired for coming back from Alwun sans story!
The music's bumpin', and I see a big-assed crowd tearin' up the dance floor. A gal with ice-white hair piled high, wearing Wellingtons, a black rubber bustier and a bloody strap-on (it was either blood or ketchup, but I'll be damned if I was gonna taste it), is lighting the cigarette of this cheesy, handlebar-mustachioed guy in a mesh top and backless black shorts that let his ass hang free. Some fat chick in a nurse's outfit with a red cross between her colossal hooters is licking caviar off the fingers of a little dude in a black feather boa who looks prettier than Kiersten Dunst. And a gorgeous black lady with straight, shoulder-length hair and red fingernail polish saunters by, done up to emulate Janet Jackson: one boob poking free, brown nipple topped by one of those silver stars. Only later would I learn that Miss Jackson's costume had in fact been painted on . . .
Next to a stone pond with a half-woman, half-snake sculpture, I observe this depraved tableau: a seven-foot dude in a black gas mask topped by faux deer antlers wielding cat-o'-nine-tails in each hand, slapping the ass of a tall carrot-top who's rockin' a black latex outfit, cut up to reveal plenty of alabaster flesh. The fetish bitch moves her reddened ass-cheeks from side to side with each crack. Around them are gathered a circle of voyeurs, which I dutifully join.
Suddenly, out of nowhere, I'm nearly tackled by Jett. Seems the lesbian Jack White's phone bill was $600 this month, and she can't call out from her cell phone to mine.
"That's what you get for calling all those 900 numbers," I say.
"Nigga, bee-have! Meet Isa Gordon. She taught design over at ASU when I was there."
"Charmed," I say, checking out the petite brunette Jett's introducing. The lovely Isa's dressed like the bitch getting ass-whacked. That is, she's in black latex sliced in all of these intricate, spiderlike patterns. Seems she leads a troupe of designers and artists who create outlandish clothes they call Sinthetex. Their cultish "family," as they refer to it, includes the S&M pair described above.
Next to her is Devan Brown, one of her clothing design partners. Devan's six-foot-seven, thin, gaunt and bald, wearing some triangular-looking black coat. He barely speaks, and resembles Jean-Luc Picard with a pituitary problem. Together, he and the tiny Isa look like they just stepped off the mother ship and are ready to start eating babies. Isa, 34, and Devan, 37, are the sort of couple who should be sipping absinthe in the Biosphere with Marilyn Manson, awaiting Armageddon.
"Myself and my partners together work on the Psymbiote Project, which is an attempt to transform me into a cyborg," she tells me, her eyes wide and eerily unblinking.
"You mean you want to be, like, the Borg on Star Trek?"
"Not becoming a machine, really, but integrating my life with technology," explains Isa. "Which people already do with cell phones and whatnot."
"You're probably a big fan of the film eXistenZ."
"Tell me about your clothing, especially what's on your hand," I say, lifting her left paw, which is covered by a metal exoskeleton that looks like something out of T3.
"This is made from titanium to fit me," she says. "It eventually will be a functional data glove for a wearable computer."
"Ah, you'll become one with the computer," I say. "And if that doesn't work, this could always make fisting a lot more interesting."
"Kreme!" squeals Jett. "Sorry, Isa. You might say he's programmed to be a smart-ass."
I look up at the albino, hairless Yao Ming and crack wise, "Think you could get one of these for your rude parts? I hear Borg chicks dig titanium testicles."
On that note, Jett hooks my arm and drags me away from Isa and "the family." In addition to my comments, she thought I was staring too intently at the gaps in Isa's latex.
"I don't want you embarrassing me," she grumbles.
"Can I help it if your ex-teacher is hot, in that Cowboy Bebop sort of way?"
"Put a dildo in it, Kreme. I want to talk to this guy in the, uh, Braveheart gear," she says. Before us is Ron Darling, a spectacled, balding fellow in his 60s, dressed from head to toe like a Scottish Highlander, in matching red kilt and hat. Aside from his tartan, the chap looks trés milquetoast. He's of average build, with sallow skin, like he's spent too many nights in front of the computer screen downloading porn. He tells us (surprise, surprise!) he's a retired software engineer. Says he's been coming to Exotic for the past eight years.
"Are you Scottish?" asks Jett.
"Irish," he corrects. "The Irish wear their kilts for formal attire, more so than the Scottish. The Scottish wear theirs when they go into battle."
"You look dead sexy," I say, doing my best Fat Bastard. "So what are you wearin' under your skirt, pops?"
"I'll only show a young, fetching girl," he grins lecherously.
"Well, here I am," says Jett. "Whip it out!" And the old dude does just that! He parts his kilt in the middle, tugs on his watch chain, and out pops a flaccid John Thomas with a cock ring on the head and a padlock on that.
"Whoa!" exclaims Jett. "You've got a big schlong!"
"How would you know?" I laugh.
"Hey, I've seen National Geographic," she replies. "That thing must be at least seven inches soft! I wonder if he gets dizzy from the loss of blood when it fills up."
"Seven inches flaccid! That's nothing," I say, trying to appear confident. Sigh . . . nobody's buying it. Truth is, you could tie a ribbon on the alter kocker's pecker.
"I've never had any complaints," Darling boasts. "Tell your readers I'm looking for a hot chick to tour the country with me in my large, plush motor home. Age isn't a problem, but they must be uninhibited because I like visiting nudist camps."
As we're recovering from the sight of Darling's ding-a-ling, a sultry, topless lady with long brown hair passes us by. Her funbags catch the eye of my ever-lecherous lezbo pal, even though they're coated by a Renaissance Fair-style body painting of some purple dragon-and-sword.
"Follow those tits!" shouts Jett, leaping ahead.
I apologize to Darling, and head after my breast-addled buddy. We bob and weave through galleries packed to the gills. Some of the standout art on display: photoreal naked babes from painter Sarah Clemens; a bronze half-donkey, half-human holding his wiener in one hand by Lawrence Taoman; communion wafers emblazoned with nude male torsos by Steph and Jay Monkeyboat; and, my fave, Sex in Doors #4, a yellow wooden door with six panels of leaded glass showing a woman's body with legs spread and a big cock and balls entering her vagina.
We descend to the basement where body painter Mark Greenawalt is about to resume photographing his "canvas," Laura Woodhouse, 33, the gal we've been following. (Apparently, Laura had to visit the ladies' room mid-photo session.) Greenawalt was responsible for painting the Janet Jackson doppelganger, too. He takes pics of his models for posterity.
We ask Laura if we can have a word with her. The queen of the lavender knockers requests we wait 'til Greenawalt finishes. As Jett is salivating at the prospect of interviewing Laura, she gets a call from her main squeeze. Seems she can get incoming calls, just can't place them until she pays the bill.
"I am working," screams Jett. "Kreme, tell her."
She holds her phone up to my mouth. "She's working," I say. "Of course, there's a naked chick right in front of us."
Jett slaps my shoulder, hard, then goes up and out to argue with her wifey du jour. I chat with Laura's boy toy, Justin Snoderly, 20, who tells me he's a pro BMX bike racer. "This was a Valentine's Day surprise," he tells me grinning, referring to Laura's arty ta-tas. Laura joins us, finally finished with the photos. Says she's studying to be an aesthetician, which has something to do with facials, and no, not the kind Ron Jeremy gives.
"It was a great experience," she tells me, now covered with the top half of her jumpsuit, which she'd had off before. "I'd do it again."
About this time a security guard comes by and kicks us all out. Time to go already? Goddamnit, it's only 1 a.m.! And when I was finally starting to get excited. Guess this means another late night snorting crank in the rest room at the 5 & Diner. At this rate, I'll never kick!
At least the art's up until Alwun's Rites of Spring Dance Ball on March 19, which folks claim is even freakier. See ya there, Isa?