Heart of the Matter: The risk of exposing yourself

Over the past two weeks there has been a sexy art exhibition held at The Art Centre, thoughtfully named Expose Yourself, created by Powell River’s own Caitlin Bryant. It is a display of erotically inspired art, as well as workshops, classes and other events, all in the name of exposing your sexy self.

It really is a gift to our little town to have such an open-minded and growth-inducing event here in our community. I was lucky enough to partake in one of the events and also co-host another; it felt edgy and daring, yet timely.

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The event my partner and I participated in was the introduction to rope bondage class hosted by Justice Schanfarber and his partner Sue at The Art Centre. I was happily surprised this class was being offered here in town, and also that there were a good number of attendees.

Participating in a class such as this can be a very vulnerable experience, especially in a small town where everyone knows everyone. The thing I like to remind people of, when they are scared of attending a class or going into a certain kind of store, is that anyone who you see is there for at least one of the same reasons as you, and that is to learn more about something that holds some curiosity.

Personally, I also go to meet other like-minded people. It was fun, lighthearted and educational; I highly recommend it.

The event I co-hosted was just last weekend. It was an erotic-themed, spoken-word evening, also held at The Art Centre.

Adrianna Virtue was the most amazing host, and together, with a few other artists, we pulled together an incredible evening full of erotic (mostly) haiku, poetry and excerpts from short stories. I’ve been dreaming about an erotic-style, spoken-word evening for a long time and it was a dream come true to finally see this happen.

The room was full of folks who wanted to listen and watch, and more folks who wanted to share some sexy words. It was thrilling to me to not only read from my own collection of erotic imagery while a room full of friends and strangers bore witness, but also listen to others share their deepest desires.

Another piece of this event was an idea Adrianna came up with from her Poetry and Prose nights. For people who are shy (about speaking in front of people or sharing their sexy stories), there is an anonymous aspect. We passed out blank paper and pens at the beginning of the night for everyone to write their material down, and then passed around a bucket to collect anything that was written.

Once it was all collected, either myself, Adrianna or random audience members would read the stories out loud. The audience took a bit of warming up (as with most good erotic adventures), to really begin sharing the sexy stuff, but we got there. And it was great!  

There is something about holding an event like Expose Yourself that really gives us all permission to open up a little bit more, try a new thing or reveal a little bit more. I came away from this whole experience with a new sense of pride for our little town, at the willingness to truly get into the spirit of things and take the risk to expose yourselves.        

Niseema Emery is a certified intimacy and relationship coach in Powell River.

Copyright © Powell River Peak

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