I. Poppe on Mon, 20 Jan 1997 18:35:47 +0100

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women with beards

>Women with Beards
>>From January 1, 1997, you can download the calendar 'Women with Beards'
>>from http://www.dds.nl/~beards. This is a project by Jetty Verhoeff,Ine
>>Poppe and Agnes de Ruijter, three Dutch artists who are active on the
>I have met two of them in the METRO ( a Multi Users Dungeon-Object
>Orientated) which is part of Amsterdam's digital city  (http://www.dds.nl)
>Ine once told me about a group of Australian women internet-artists, who
>carry the slogan: ' I like to go out there and get my cock sucked'. These
>Dutch women have apparently taken this motto to heart. But instead of
>women with balls, I find a present for the www-user: a monthly calendar:
>'Women with Beards'.
>When I visit the website for the first time, I look with terror at their
>Hairy Babe of the Month: the bearded woman writer Natasha Gerson, nursing
>her baby Sophie. Despite my disgust I read on. There is a link to an
>excerpt from Natasha's book which will appear in May, there is a calendar
>that you can subscribe to: a new Babe for every month! Babes of all kinds,
>shapes and sizes.
>I start to wonder: what type of women would want to put a thing like that
>on the net? To my relief three handsome young ladies appear for the
>interview: Jetty, a photographer, Agnes, director, and Ine, a writer.
>Agnes says: ' The idea of women with beards started out as a joke, but it
>has turned into a metaphor for ... (she takes a deep breath) a new way of
>looking at ambitions, sex, love and reproduction.'
>Ine laughs: 'She practiced on that one!' Agnes nods in agreement.
>'The calendar is a nice present, for everyone who types the words 'babe',
>'calendar', or 'sex'', Jetty adds.
>Jetty Verhoeff dit not digitally edit the pictures, but has instead
>created an environment in which she photographs the babes in an attractive
>way, after a make-up artist has applied the facial hair.
>'A model who sees herself in the mirror with a beard, poses differently',
>Jetty says.
>The choice of the bearded ladies is very varied; there are young chicks
>but also some senior babes. Ladies who are very active on the internet,
>and women who whave never heard of the word 'modem'. Agnes: 'Ine and Jetty
>are very active on the Internet, they couldn't talk about anything else'.
>Jetty:' I have only had a modem for a year, but my phone bills are
>terrible already' (Translator's note: in Holland you pay a substantial
>amount per hour to your ISP)
> 'You can start to collect tin cans,' Agnes suggests.
>'Well I was hoping that the Tatjana-calendar which you get with beer
>(another odd Dutch custom- translator) would be an inspiration' Jetty
>replies, 'but it wasn't- most babe calendars are a real disappointment,
>What are the criteria to ask a woman for the calendar?
>Ine:'They are all women with a sense of humor, and they are interesting to
>look at. Natasha is just nursing, and Sonja is a bit older...'
>Jetty: 'We photographed Sonja, a woman of 67, with a beard. That was hard,
>because she looked just like a little troll, and I wanted something
>special. There was one brilliant picture where she is sitting very
>straight, wearing a blue blouse with golden buttons, and she looks just
>like a sea captain.'
>Ine adds: 'We add links to every babe's page. With Sonja we wanted to link
>to the WOUW- the Wild Old Women's club, a group of women of over 65 who
>are on the Internet.'
>Jetty: 'The Website should look nice, but not too complicated'.
>Ine adds: 'The idea is that the site will grow slowly. There will be a
>guest book, and we will make some of the images into screensaver babes. I
>only got a modem in April '96 but.... my life has become much more fun
>Since June '96, Ine has been writing the weekly column 'Newbe' on the
>Digital City Newsletter (http://www.dds.nl/~krantb - only in Dutch
>unfortunately, TN) about three girlfriends who hang around in a MOO, and
>have rooms and identities there. 'We love her columns', Jetty says. Ine
>says it's all fiction: 'Women are of course still a minority on the
>Internet, especially those who show some intitiative'.
>'You mean you jump some guys' bones occasionally, in the MOO,' Jetty
>laughs, who, as Ine, is a regular visitor in the MOO. 'I only did that
>once!' Ine protests 'and it was not a big success. The gentleman said he
>wasn't an 009- number!'
>'At least he can look at you now on our calendar,' Agnes says.
>And Jetty adds: 'You have a lot of 'babe.com' calendars on the Internet,
>of course. In a sense, our calendar is a tasteful parody. I just hope that
>someone in Australia will download it, print it, and hang it in his
>When I finally get to see a preview of the babes which are planned to come
>out in 1997, I have to admit that the bearded ladies have seduced me...
>Tycho Meier, Tychom@dds.nl
>Translation: Anita de Waard (http://neuro-www2.mgh.harvard.edu/anita/me.html)