For some, being a dog is an exploration of sexuality; for others, a matter of identity, freedom, or play. In the BDSM subculture, initially being a dog was to be humiliated. However, in the 90s and 00s, pup play radically developed into a phenomenon of self-expression and pride.
Today, pup players often create carefully crafted personalities, including their pup name, outfit, sometimes even which breed of dog they are.
Pup play has provided an easily approachable way for newcomers to enter the kink scene. The gear is not expensive, and pup play’s innocence, wildness, and anonymity make kink parties easier to attend.
Pup play is an intersectional phenomenon, bringing together individuals of all genders, ages and sexual orientations. The community crosses social classes and equally includes pilots, doctors, politicians, waiters, priests, postmen, police officers and engineers. Even your neighbour may be quite a terrier in the bedroom.
This exhibition is outdoors. Please check what COVID-19 restrictions are in place before you visit.
“I spent most of my childhood summers in the Finnish archipelago where we lived in our old fishing boat. Almost every night, we travelled to a new island. Already as a kid, I learned that if I make a campfire, people would gather around it. So every night, I did a campfire, and every night people gathered around it. Later in the night, people started to tell stories. Every time I did a campfire, I got new stories. I just listened to and memorised these stories, and after the summer, I told the stories to my friends in the city. I think I’m still doing the same thing. Collecting stories and telling them to other people with the help of my photos.”
Aki-Pekka Sinikoski is a Finnish photographer and writer working somewhere on the border between documentary, contemporary, and performative art. Sinikoski has studied in Kunstakademiet at Kunsthøgskolen in Bergen, Norway and graduated with a Master’s of Arts from Aalto University, Finland (TaiK, Helsinki).
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