Tracey Snelling
Cheetah's Gentlemen's Club
2016
mixed media
45.5 x 54 x 38.5 cm
Strip clubs are fascinating places. In the case of the female strip club, which is predominant, men, and sometimes women, go to watch nude or almost nude women gyrate and climb a pole, and possibly to get a lap dance. The best strippers have a good hustle--convince the customer that they want them, get more lap dances, more money, buy more alcohol, come back the next night. The play of power is interesting as both sides are working from an edge. In the end, it's all a game. She pretends to want him. He tricks himself into thinking she really wants him, or on the other end of the spectrum, he gets off on the fact that he is paying to get what he wants.

Strip clubs with male dancers have louder crowds. The women scream and laugh with their girlfriends. and the male dancers seem to have their way with the women, dry-humping them on stage and seducing them. It feels like a different kind of power, the men more in control. But without the adoration of the women, the male dancers don't succeed.

In the end, both are fantasies. Some look for intimacy or some kind of connection. Others want to impress their friends on cool they are to be at the club. And still others want a short escape from the drudgery of everyday life or maybe a long, stagnant marriage. It's all a fantasy of music. bodies, eye contact and sometimes body contact. In the end, you leave the garishly-lit room with musty carpet and 80's hairband music, breathe the fresh air of the night, and drive home to your real life.
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