Friday, April 22, 2011

'Passion' Play Pix Rival Folsom Fair
for Whips and Kinkiness

The Datebook section in today's print edition of the San Francisco Chronicle might have been designed to attract the eyeballs of two key Bay Area audiences: the Christians and the leather/kink community. Hey, every daily has to keep people buying the recycled-tree editions and more photos is one way to do it.

The central piece on the section's front-page was an excellent photographic essay of assorted "Passion" plays at local churches and amateur actors rehearsing for performance in conjunction with Holy Week. The centerfold of the Datebook was an eye-popping array of colorful and very pervy/religious pix.

Looking at the fabulous images, all snapped by a staff photographer, I couldn't help but recall the controversy in 2007 when the Folsom Street Fair, a yearly day-long kink parade that attracts hundreds of thousands of fetishists and the voyeurs who love them, used this poster:

That parody of Leonardo Da Vinci's famous "Last Supper" painting created headlines around the world, because Christians were upset. Those headlines likely brought more attendees to the Folsom Street Fair, and the photographer of the poster, Fred Alert, saw his work reposted and on display at countless web sites.

Here are the two pix that best convey the kinkiness of some Bay Area productions of the "Passion" play and the hunkiness of some of the men who create them. These photos taken by the SF Chronicle's Mike Kepka:

An actor portraying Jesus Christ gets squirted with fake blood on his naked chest and flat stomach, as he prepares to wear a crown of thorns.

Another production's rehearsal shows a performer carrying a wooden cross, as a leather-clad guard uses a silver-colored whip on his backside.

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