When Your Body is the Lesson: On Art Modeling
In practice, this gig is easier than expected. It’s my mind that throws me off.
The most awkward part is that I don’t begin naked. At first, the students think I’m maybe a new classmate, the result of an add/drop, maybe a new teaching assistant. They look at me the way you look at new classmates, disinterested or dismissive—or sometimes hopeful, like maybe they imagine we’ll be friends, lovers, more. It’s how I look at them, too, despite knowing that I’m here to make money.
stand on a table, be naked, pose
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As a black man in the field of social work, my dad was, as a white female coworker of his once put it, “like a fly in buttermilk.”