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Martyn Marsland Mills ✜ tied up with Sophia

Video: Markus Tozzer

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✜ tied up with Sophia ✜ solo show by Marty Marsland Mills

Vernissage: 28.11.18 19:00
Exhibition: 29.11 - 14.12.18

An illustrative study and window into the wonderful world of ‘Shibari’, Tied up with Sophia, is a body-positive, personal and thought-provoking collection of sensually soaked work. 
A delicately hand-drawn series of pencil and watercolor snapshots and studies unveiled publically for the first time. 
This brand new body of work will be presented by the distinctly graphic illustrator, Martyn Marsland Mills, in collaboration with the sex-positive performer and teacher, Sophia Rose, who acts as both our guide and muse throughout. Juxtaposing the stark and striking geometric shapes of the ropes against the soft natural curves and contortions of the body, this visually arresting and loving homage to its subject is erotically charged, yet remains meditative and intimate at the same time.

✜ About Martyn Marsland Mills:
Martyn is a professional dreamer and Odinic wanderer whom has dedicated the last 20 years to explore, study and illustrate strayed symbolism and misinterpreted myths, whilst helping to highlight and represent a diverse selection of lost voices, lesser known social groups and underground subcultures. 
A self-taught, yet award-winning visual artist, Martyn is continuously producing accessible works that reach out to new audiences. Hoping to inform, inspire, engage, and/or simply entertain, Martyn often uses whatever tools are at hand; be they a pencil, brush, keyboard, needle or at times his gravelly voice.
Heavily influenced by the macabre and the strangely beautiful, in each project undertaken, Martyn attempts to make his work universally assessable, however beneath the surface, there is always a much deeper and symbolic context, connection and/or philosophy at play.
Loving an opportunity to explore new contexts and opportunities, Martyn has been fortunate in forging new families and close working relationships around the globe, including a rich list of clients, collaborators and co-conspirators.

✜ About Sophia Rose (Sophia's words):
“Being in ropes has been the single most transformational experience of my life so far, and it is still an ongoing, developing process where I continue to learn deeply about myself.
Until I discovered Shibari, I had always felt a lot of shame or confusion around my sexuality, my desires, and never felt my body was really 'good' or able to do interesting things. Being tied, I began to feel a freedom and joy in realising how strong I really am, how I can overcome challenges, and shine inside and out. 
It is very personal and sometimes beautifully overwhelming to feel such an intimate connection to my own mind and body, and the freedom to let go and trust someone else to move me physically (and emotionally), I find very fulfilling. 
There is something for me very special to build close relationships with those who I tie with, and be able to feel each other without necessarily speaking when we are tying, it can be an interaction of hearts, bodies, and minds, often just reading each others body language and non verbal signals to understand the other. It is rare to find that type of closeness and communication; a closeness that is not necessarily physically sexual, but often erotic/intimate/caring/sensual. 
I am so filled with joy when I think about my experiences in ropes, and I often cry when I am being untied - but not because of sadness or pain - It is like the type of cry you feel perhaps when you meet someone at the airport who you have missed for a long time - the type of cry which is more meaningful – ‘I am so happy to see you, I am so happy to know you, I am so happy to love you and feel loved by you’ - That's how I feel towards myself and the person I am tying with when I have these moments. Free to feel, free to express, free to explore.” 

A rope lover, model, performer, teacher and sex-positive.

✜ About Shibari:
In Japanese, “Shibari” simply means, “to tie”… 
The origin of Shibari comes from Hojo-jutsu, the martial art of restraining captives. In the late 1800′s and early 1900′s, a new form of erotic Hojo-justu evolved, called Kinbaku, the art of erotic bondage. Today, particularly in the west, the art of erotic bondage is typically referred to as Shibari, now an art of erotic spirituality, rather than that of a martial art.
The aesthetic arrangement of ropes and knots on the model’s body in Shibari rigging emphasizes characteristics like sensuality, vulnerability, and strength. The positioning of knots in appropriate places can stimulate pressure points on the body, similar to acupuncture techniques and Shiatsu (a form of Japanese massage). Moreover, some believe a Shibari experience also stimulates Ki or Qui energy flow and transfer.
In addition to creating beautiful patterns, with rope, body and limb placements, Shibari rigging induces, physiological conditions that are similar to the “runners high” experienced by athletes. The experience can result in an increased level of endorphins and other hormones, creating a trance-like experience for the bottom/model and an adrenaline rush for the Top/rigger. 

✜ Exhibition Activities:
A musical selection to feed your ears and stimulate your mind will be provided at the Vernissage by Rumi von Baires. 

Further activities to be announced include an artist and performer talk, rope/knot tying workshops and a film screening.