Visionary artist Fakir Musafar and the body modification movement.

A BODY TO LIVE IN

by UnionDocs

  • $100,000.00

    Goal
  • $13,447.00

    Raised
  • 0

    Days to go
Raised Percent :
13.45%
Minimum amount is $ Maximum amount is $
$
New York, United States (US)

The paths our queer elders have paved is rich and often unsung.
What can we learn from their ingenuity? How can we consider cultural responsibility within a historical context? What is the relationship between sexuality and spirituality? Why do we need rituals? Why do we need art?

Through discovering the photography and performance work of LGBT and kink icon Fakir Musafar (1930-2018), these are just a few of the questions A BODY TO LIVE IN asks.

Shot on rich 16mm film and with extensive, never before seen archival materials, A BODY TO LIVE IN is an immersive, enrapturing visual experience; a dive into the historical, ethical, artistic, and spiritual dimensions of the body modification movement.

Using Fakir’s early experiments in body play and “gender flex,” his photographic and performance works invite us to trace the body modification movement as it emerged in western LGBT subculture in the 1970s. The film introduces us to early key figures – Fakir, Jim Ward, Doug Malloy – whose collaborative experimentation at gay underground BDSM parties led to the first piercing shop (Gauntlet Enterprises, Los Angeles, 1978), a subsequent revision of the DSM’s (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) definition of self-harm, and an entire subculture. Insights from Annie Sprinkle, Ron Athey, Cléo Dubois, Idexa Stern, Jim Ward, Midori, Sheree Rose, and others provoke deeper reflections about art making, surviving the AIDS epidemic, the role of the spiritual within the erotic, and ethical dimensions of myth-making.

A BODY TO LIVE IN is written and directed by Angelo Madsen Minax, who has been participating in queer, trans, sex work, and kink communities for over 15 years. He first encountered Fakir’s photography in 2003 as a young trans person, and was introduced to Fakir in 2005. The two shared community until Fakir’s death. Madsen’s film Kairos Dirt and the Errant Vacuum (2017), about a cross-dimensional queer romance, was one of the last film’s Fakir saw in the theater before his passing in 2018. He claimed it was his favorite film.

Minax’s last feature film NORTH BY CURRENT, was released to critical acclaim in 2021, premiering at the Berlin International Film Festival, Tribeca Film Festival, and airing on PBS. It won an IDA award for best writing, a Spotlight Award from Cinema Eye Honors, was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award, and listed in Rolling Stone’s top 20 films of the year. Even with a robust track record for successfully creating inventive films, the content of this new work provides unique challenges to accessing support and funding: People are afraid of sex. Regardless of how “progressive” folks are or would like to be, our puritanical, patriarchal, hetero-normative world, enforces strict barriers when it comes to nudity, the erotic, BDSM, and gender transformation. Simply put, this project has come up against homophobia, transphobia, and sex phobia. With these systemic barriers in place, we come to our community to ask your support in realizing this important new work. Our current urgent funding needs are specifically to continue principal photography.

You can learn more about the film and the film’s team at abodytolivein.com. We’re grateful for your support.

I’m not my body, I just live in it.
– Fakir Musafar


 

Self portrait by Fakir Musafar, “A Perfect Gentleman,” 1959

 


DONATIONS ARE TAX-DEDUCTIBLE. Please note donations made via credit card incur a small fee on our end, if you’re feeling oldschool, paper checks (no fee) can be sent to UnionDocs 352 Onderdonk Ave, Ridgewood, NY 11385. Please note that it’s for this project!

We would like to thank the Catapult Film Fund and LEF Foundation for the risks you have taken henceforth to support this work.

“I want to donate A LOT! Are there any opportunities to earn a credit on the film?”
Short answer: Let’s talk! :)

“When will I get to see the film?”
Most likely, mid-late 2024.

 

Name Donate Amount Date
Ian Bishop $250.00 November 21, 2022
Susan Gray $100.00 November 15, 2022
Greg Jamie $50.00 November 14, 2022
Alberto Navalon $10.00 November 13, 2022
Cheryl Schainfeld $100.00 November 12, 2022
Eric Olsen $600.00 November 11, 2022
Ann Soucy $25.00 November 11, 2022
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Caitlin Horsmon $50.00 November 09, 2022
Federica Gianni $50.00 November 04, 2022
Gab Fernandez $10.00 November 02, 2022
Lynn Loheide $200.00 November 02, 2022
Joana Subirats Ferrando $1.00 November 01, 2022
VIRGINIA SOLOMON $100.00 October 31, 2022
Josh Zeldner $500.00 October 30, 2022
Judith Tucker $100.00 October 28, 2022
Jo Nelson $100.00 October 26, 2022
Alexis Heller $100.00 October 25, 2022
Jami Holland $40.00 October 25, 2022
Les Vogel $1,000.00 October 24, 2022
Neon Weiss $500.00 October 24, 2022
Geof Worcester $100.00 October 23, 2022
Alex Chaney $20.00 October 23, 2022
Mike Robott $100.00 October 22, 2022
LuLu Thomsett $100.00 October 22, 2022
Barbara Carrellas $150.00 October 22, 2022
Joyin Shih $100.00 October 21, 2022
Christian Mejia $25.00 October 21, 2022
Dino Helvida $20.00 October 20, 2022
Valentina Fierro $100.00 October 20, 2022
Alanna McKnight $100.00 October 20, 2022
Amy Kingsmill $10.00 October 20, 2022
Alexia Phillips $500.00 October 20, 2022
Gayle Rubin $100.00 October 20, 2022
Keith Hennessy $100.00 October 19, 2022
Anthony Berno $1,000.00 October 19, 2022
Ruben Triguero $100.00 October 19, 2022
germaine gits $500.00 October 19, 2022
Tirza Krant $10.00 October 19, 2022
Michael Rosen $100.00 October 19, 2022
Robert Cabe $50.00 October 19, 2022
Aymar Jean $75.00 October 19, 2022
Iva Radivojevic $80.00 October 19, 2022
Tim Gerdes $20.00 October 19, 2022
ciro beldrighi $4.00 October 19, 2022
Charlotte Curtis $150.00 October 19, 2022
Jeff Rhodin $100.00 October 19, 2022
Bruce Hopper $500.00 October 19, 2022
Cynthia & Wright $501.00 October 19, 2022
Anonymous $1.00 October 18, 2022
Paul King $500.00 October 18, 2022
Nica Ross $100.00 October 18, 2022
Vera Basford $50.00 October 18, 2022
Melissa Dunn $50.00 October 18, 2022
Kaia Anderson-Buckley $15.00 October 18, 2022
Patrick Mulcahey $100.00 October 18, 2022
Emanuela Bianchi $200.00 October 18, 2022
Brooke Talcott $550.00 October 18, 2022
Joanne Archibald $25.00 October 18, 2022
Sean Fitinghoff $100.00 October 18, 2022
John Bonck $25.00 October 18, 2022
Rebecca Zinner $50.00 October 18, 2022
Eames Armstrong $100.00 October 18, 2022
Inney Prakash $25.00 October 18, 2022
Colin Palombi $50.00 October 18, 2022
Lark Doolan $500.00 October 18, 2022
Allen Falkner $500.00 October 18, 2022
Duke Bischoff $100.00 October 18, 2022
Margaret Wade $50.00 October 18, 2022
Anonymous $11.00 October 18, 2022
Alejandra Vargas $69.00 October 18, 2022
Jennifer Junkyard Morris $250.00 October 18, 2022
Cody Vaughn $500.00 October 18, 2022
Harmony Niles $100.00 October 18, 2022
Brian Washburn $500.00 October 18, 2022