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Manscaping

Broderick Fox
United States, 2022, 62 min.

In English.
Includes nudity.

An Afrofuturist, a naked fetishist, and a community activist walk into a barbershop… Black American visual artist Devan Shimoyama, transgender Canadian barber Jessie Anderson, and Australian fetish barber/porn producer Richard Savvy are three queer men reimagining the traditional barbershop and restyling masculinity along the way.

Director's Statement

I entered into production on Manscaping driven by my own complex matrix of desire and fear elicited by barbershops, and the impulse to scrutinize those feelings more deeply while exploring the lives, work, and experiences of other queer artists and activists linked to these masculinist spaces. I think of documentary’s potential as being inherently queer: using intersectional and interdisciplinary frameworks to unpack perceived norms. Manscaping is an experimental documentary that uses barbering and body hair as a means of questioning historical and cultural ideas about masculinity and manhood in the West. My own queer perspective and the stories of other LGBTQ+ and marginalized individuals are re-centered in my media works, connecting audiences with issues and perspectives that have traditionally been excised from or sidelined by mainstream media. Manscaping amplifies queer, Black, and trans issues in essential, timely ways. The film reveals how its three central participants are transforming the often exclusionary space of the barbershop into a site of queer reimagining and possibility. Devan, Jessie, Richard, and their communities of friends, clients, and collaborators vivify a spectrum of cis-, trans-, and nongender identifications, races and ethnicities, sexual orientations, and national origins. Their varied engagements with barbering help audiences to reimagine masculinity (and gender more broadly) as an ongoing cultural performance and dynamic space for self-expression and social justice, modeling new conceptions of personal and cultural identity that both reveal and destabilize toxic masculinity.

Category: Documentary.

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