Since as far back as history allows us to explore, artists have used the nude male and female figures as inspiration behind their work. From the sculptures of Ancient Greece to the countless Renaissance depictions of the nude Venus – the unclothed have always been a point of interest for creatives, and the lesser known or widely accepted penchant for erotica has been around just as long. In ancient India, they had the sex manual Kama Sutra. In pre-Columbian South America, erotic ceramics were popular, and Japan’s original porn shunga dates back to the 13th century.
Now, in 2017, millennials have the world wide web. With such technology at our fingertips and more sexual freedom than ever before, us liberated 21st century dwellers can get our smut much easier than those waiting for a raunchy woodblock print in the Edo period. Thank God for Instagram.
Baroness is the sister magazine of Baron, dubbed as the “Erotic Paperback Magazine for gentlemen and ladies who enjoy a cocktail, chit chatting about modern art, fine dressing and when the lights faint and the gin runs out, are connoisseurs at getting their companion into bed.” Focusing on the female gaze, Baroness is unique in how it focuses both on what women want to see and how they are seen sexually; it’s a step away from the imagery aimed at catering to heterosexual males, which is often found in nude magazines. A new endeavour, Baroness only has one issue under her belt at the moment – and the debut publication throws right back to its Baron roots by simply sub-titling itself “The Erotic Paperback”. With three different covers to choose from, each is as NSFW as the next – Harley Weir’s cherry-testicles have even merited the smutty badge of honour from Google – censorship through pixilation. Inside the magazine “the world’s finest perverts” have their say – with an exposé on forniphilia, a short essay entitled “Marie Claire is a Slut, pornographic sketches and a shoot featuring a man with two penises.
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Copenhagen-based independent publisher LE PETIT VOYEUR is dedicated to showcasing an eclectic mix of visual art, street art and nude photography. The mag features the work of pop artist KAWS and muralist Aryz, spreads from provocative connessuir Ren Hang and Mirage Magazine founder, Henrick Purienne, and even a few of Johnathan Leder’s sensual shots of contemporary pin-up model Emily Ratajkowski. This way, LE PETIT VOYEUR surpasses the constrictions of generic smutty magazines with its inclusion of various genres and mediums. The biannual publication is advertisement-free, allowing its viewers to enjoy the carefully curated “eye-candy” with as little distraction as possible.
Although Extra Extra’s Instagram presence isn’t as lingering as we would hope, it didn’t seem fair to leave the Dutch magazine out of this list of smutty magazines. Boasting imagery from SLEEK favourites Lena. C Emery and George Nebieridze in its newest issue, the magazine celebrates mundane and sensual city life – evident in the former’s seductive set-up of barely clothed girls simply hanging out and the latter’s candid portrayal of the poor-but-sexy Berlin youth. A dare-to-bare platform for sharing stories around eroticism, fantasies and culture, Extra Extra’s aim is to promote a dialogue between artists, producers and a worldwide audience.
Founded in 2006 by sisters Christine and Sigrun, this photography-fashion-music-travel-sex-art-and-culture-magazine is a snapshot of youth culture. Using the mantra ”We all become witnesses of our times. We are young and reckless. We are wild and free”, the female-produced publication focuses on promoting creatives across the entire artistic spectrum to reach a young audience with a strong interest in contemporary cultural movements. The magazine focuses strongly on photography, and delivers exclusive editorials featuring designers, stylists and recording artists from all over the world. Although the women featured in this magazine are generally quite scantily-clad, the simplistic style of shooting results in a raw and natural aesthetic – pushing it past the realms of a simple men’s magazine and more towards the genre of art and culture.
Arising from “a huge need to explore”, this magazine from the Spanish studio Folch aims to offer a more sophisticated take on erotic publishing. By juxtaposing philosophical texts and essays with nude imagery, the idea of Odiseo is to produce content that is all-inclusive in order to move away from the “men-only” label that many nude magazines have, and also to avoid stereotypes and clichés. Dissatisfied with their initial concept for Issue one, the extensive team, “seeking a different and intimate take on photography”, relaunched and are now satisfied with the balance they have achieved. Featuring tasteful imagery from Jonathan Schofield, Lina Scheynius and Jo Schwab, to name but a few, this publication is certainly accomplishing the personal and refined standard that they have set for themselves.