DANNI ASHE, FRAZETTA WOMEN, AND THE LESSONS THEY TEACH US ABOUT BODY IMAGE

"I'm a big fat mama, got the meat shakin' on my bones;
I'm a big fat mama, got the meat shakin' on my bones.
And every time I shake,
Some skinny gal lose her home!" -- Ida Lee


Nowhere is the distance more evident between what Hollywood thinks is sexy, and what men really want, than in the career of Danni Ashe. Her status as most popular internet pin-up has been documented and audited by three independent agents before being confirmed by Guinness.

The females listed by magazines and television are at least ten pounds underweight, little more than boys with bumps. Danni Ashe is all boobs and butt and hips and aquiline nose, broad cheekbones and smile. Her most common expression is not the gasp of an oriental temptress in the throes of artificial ecstacy, but the happy smile of an affectionate wife or girlfriend when she knows you're aroused. Man, I do love her in a suit jacket. She is a bountiful goddess to every lonely man, and a reproach to every anorexic on the cover of People magazine. [In fairness, it should be noted that sans makeup, lighting and wardrobe, Miss Ashe bears a strong resemblance to a significant other of the editors at OEE.]

We see the same cognitive dissonance between the body type lauded in the runway model and the goddess archetypes popularized in the fantasy paintings of Frank Frazetta. The heavy, muscular thighs (I should be ashamed for even writing that phrase, but can you describe them any better) and wide-beamed hips are symbolic of feminine power, the equivalent of broad shoulders in the male.

The double domed stomach of a healthy female body has almost disappeared from American advertising. That is all well and good, in a lad's magazine aimed at twenty-year-olds, but a culture that insists on this model of feminity into its thirties is in trouble. This is the visual equivalent of television studios that only hire writers under thirty to write their sitcoms, with a predictable drop in the quality of work produced, and the limiting of the American imagination.

Frazetta made his living as an illustrator for fantasy novels, but his nude models, ironically, were close to home, and grounded in the reality of his wife Ellie, as we learn from recently released portraits. It's his mental landscapes that wander far from reality-- imagine the Poconos with cavemen, tyrannosaurs, and barbarian queens with psychic control over sabertooth tigers. To make the esthetic circle complete, Frazetta was not himself a scrawny fellow imagining the superman, but startling handsome, dark and fierce eyed. And he loved his work.

2 comments:

Aporia said...

I know Danni Ashe. Excellent woman.

I met her when I ran Busty Dusty's website/fansite, and pretended to be her for her legions of net.fans. One of the reasons she's so popular on the net is she was one of the very first models to have the wherewithal and technical skill to make a website for herself, thus ensuring her lasting fame.

Ormondroyd's Encyclopedia Esoterica said...

Please pass the word along that not all her devotees are Miss Loneyhearts rejects; many are kind, intelligent, lovely men and women of accomplishment she'd be proud to know.