This Queer, Pornographic (NSFW) Needlepoint Is Everything
Many people's introductions to needlepoint — a type of embroidery that uses different colors of thread and needle on a canvas — is through their grandmother, with cute images like flowers, or birds, or cats.
But this is not your grandma's needlepoint.
Artist Zach Nutman takes the craft to completely new places with a project he calls "needleporn" — and, yes, it's exactly what it sounds like. Instead of cats and flowers, Nutman stitches surprisingly detailed queer porn images on his canvases.
There are depictions of a guy giving another guy a blowjob, a woman masturbating, someone who looks like David Bowie having anal sex with another man, a cheerleader going down on another cheerleader, and many, many more.
What really strikes us about Nutman's needlepoint, though, is that it's incredibly inclusive. Nutman stitches relationships between two women, between two men, between three men, and of people having solo sex. He shows sexual situations between people of multiple races and images of people who seems to break gender norms.
While Needleporn would be awesome even if there was no greater meaning behind it, Nutman did have a reasoning behind starting this project — other than just that "it might be a fun thing to do."
He told Mic that he was tired of the way queer sexuality is often depicted in mainstream media. Queer sex and relationships on television are often either punished with violence (like on Game of Thrones) or completely devoid of passion (like on Modern Family).
Needleporn was "the most grandmotherly, matriarchal way to depict aggressive queer sex in a way that felt wholesome and was not at all diluting the sexuality of it," Nutman told Mic. Instead, it celebrates queer sexuality.
He started the project two years ago and has made about 30 pieces so far. That may not seem like a lot — but just look at the detail involved in this work.
In case you're wondering, he does take commissions — his only requirement is that the situation feels queer.
"It was always important for me to show hard, queer sex in this really soft medium," he told Mic. "The first one I did was two dudes going at it. It didn't get more sexual; it started off really sexual and has stayed that way."
Thank god for that.