Arts & Entertainment
2 min

Feminist Porn Awards does dudes

'The bedroom is the last frontier of social justice:' Deveaux

Shine Louise Houston (left), Tristan Taormino and Jiz Lee at the Feminist Porn Awards ceremony. Credit: Sidra Mahmood

Partygoers created a hot, mixed crowd that dressed to the nines and cruised all night long at the sixth annual Feminist Porn Awards ceremony at Toronto’s Berkeley Heritage Event Venue on April 15. The night featured a menu of porn that went further, harder, deeper and faster than ever before. An erotic eye for masculinity was on the agenda in a big way and, as you’d expect from feminist pornographers, that move is part of a broader push to shake up the porn establishment.

Shine Louise Houston, the creator of the dyke series Crash Pad, won an award for Honoured Website for her new site heavenlyspire, which features male performers in couples and solo scenes.

“I created this site for selfish reasons,” says Houston. “I really just wanted to explore my own fascination with cock.”

She calls her style “docu-art-porn.” Models can audition for the site and get a direct cut of the profits. Couples can apply together, but if you apply on your own, you go solo on the screen. The goal is to bring the ethics of feminist porn to dude-on-dude action, and one of those ethics is portraying authentic desire.

“I watch mainstream gay porn and it’s very cookie-cutter,” Houston says. “This is completely different. I like to break the fourth wall at the end of my movies. I want to humanize my models. The facade breaks down and you can see the difference it makes when you watch real-life couples. I ask the guys what they think is sexy about their bodies, and it’s really interesting how they respond: it’s not always their cock. Sometimes it’s their arms or their ass or hands. When they tell me how they eroticize different parts of themselves, I can highlight that when I film.”

Feminist porn likes to use the word “revolution” a lot. It’s a self-conscious movement that mixes being in-your-face and doing your own thing in equal measures. The ethical criteria would benefit any industry: portray authentic experiences, respect the models, break down stereotypes that hold us back from pleasure. And break down the barriers among producers, consumers and actors in porn.

“I want to see more categories at the Feminist Porn Awards that acknowledge feminist subjectivity with respect to gay male porn,” says Drew Deveaux, winner of the FPA heartthrob award. Deveaux spoke about her desire to make inroads for trans women in porn.

“The bedroom is the last frontier of social justice. There are many genres of porn where people are making hotter and more realistic depictions of sex. That’s in gay male, mainstream and t-girl porn, too.”

Jiz Lee, a genderqueer pornstar, notes that masculinity in feminist porn will be more inclusive.

“Trans men are respected as men and included in gay porn and masculine representations,” says Lee, “but feminist porn isn’t about getting people to identify as feminists; it’s letting people see how these values reflect their own.”

Houston mixes masculinity into her crashpadseries.com series, with trans men and cisgendered men having sex with queer women, genderqueer performers and each other.

“It raised the question of queer men and queer women sexing each other,” says Houston, “but the result is not very straight.”

Mixing in trans men, trans women, genderqueer performers and a whole lot of dick, ass, pussy, mouth, sex toys and imagination, Crash Pad is a whirlwind determined to redefine your ho-hum porn experience. And there’s plenty more where that came from.

“This is a shout-out to everyone who considers themselves a feminist, and a feminist who loves cock,” says Houston in accepting her award.