A flier for the UCSB Resource Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity's IdentiTEA: Kink event; a picture of ItsPlay teaching "Kink 101;" A flier for the class " Connective Rope 101."
2020 was a year of change.
Working with the University of California Santa Barbara's Resource Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity (RCSGD), I created and taught content for the RCSGD's Kink Series. In January, I co-facilitated IdentiTEA: Kink, a discussion group for kinky identified LGBTQI+ folx, and January and February I taught two courses, Kink 101 and Connective Rope 101. RCSGD staff and I put together an online Kink and Consent Panel in April., featuring Professor Constance Penley from the Department of Film and Media Studies, PhD candidate Cierra Sorin from Sociology, and myself, speaking on the importance of consent within kink and the adult industry. Impact Play 101 was slated for May but is on hold indefinitely due to Covid-19!
In June I completed the first year of my PhD with straight As. The International Federation of Theatre Research (IFTR) postponed its annual conference, at which I was slated to present a paper with the Queer Futures Working Group. However, I continued working on BDSM and alternative sexualities over the summer, receiving a minigrant for Multidisciplinary Research on COVID-19 and its Impacts (MRCI). This enabled me to spend July and August examining the effects of the pandemic on BDSM communities, conducting online interviews with 11 kinky-identifying people in 10 countries.
August saw me finish Intimacy Coordination training and receive my certification from the Intimacy Professionals Association. Intimacy Coordinators (for film and television) and Intimacy Directors (for theatre) help enable the performance of simulated sex and nudity while supporting a safe and consensual working environment for actors and crew. Check out my website for Intimacy Coordination, Intimacy Direction, and consulting!
In September I began the second year of my doctorate, pursuing all coursework remotely due to the pandemic. Jumping into teaching responsibilities, I instructed two groups of undergraduates in Introduction to Acting. Meanwhile, I was accepted into the UCSB Interdisciplinary Humanities Center's Public Humanities Graduate Fellows Program and began coursework for that learning stream. By December I had successfully completed another academic quarter, maintaining a 4.0 and solidifying my dissertation committee.
A Spanish call for papers for the journal Corpo-Grafías; many books swirling; IFTR's 2019 Shanghai conference announcement.
In February, my co-authored article on rope bondage, rhizomes, and affect, with abstract available in English, Spanish and (somewhat mangled) Portuguese, was published in Corpo-Grafias (Revista Corpo-grafías, Estudios críticos de y desde los cuerpos). Read "Rope Bondage and Affective Embodiments: A rhizomatic analysis" here. (Rope Bondage and Affective Embodiments: A rhizomatic analysis. Revista Corpo-grafías: Estudios críticos de y desde los cuerpos, 6(6), 64-77 / ISSN 2390-0288.)
As of March, I received nine offers of admission to undertake my proposed PhD in Performance Studies, focusing on BDSM and affective embodiments. In April, after a difficult selection process, I elected to begin my doctorate in the fall at The University of California Santa Barbara. In May I traveled to the Netherlands for two weeks to undertake field research, and in June I returned to Hong Kong and Taiwan to network with members of the BDSM community.
July saw me travel to Shanghai, China, to present research at the International Federation of Theatre Research's 2019 Conference on Theatre, Performance, and Urbanism. I was awarded a bursary to cover travel and conference registration expenses. For the remainder of the summer I made preparations for my relocation to California, and in September I began my doctoral work in Santa Barbara.
A map of Taiwan; a geometric needlepoint of two people; a black graduation cap; the announcement for Bodies-Re-formed.
July to December: co-authored journal article affect, rhizomes, and the materiality of rope bondage for publication in the journal Corpo-Grafías with Iris Ordean
Created art installation and delivered lecture "Rope Bondage, Rhizomes, and Affective Embodiments"
At the Bodies Re-formed Conference, 3 November 2018
Academic Conference organized by the Durham University Centre for Visual Arts and Culture's Durham, England
Delivered performance provocation and lecture "Tied Up In Research: Breaking the Scholar-Practitioner Binary"
At the STR NRN's Fifth Annual Symposium, 8 July 2018
Academic Conference organized by the Society for Theatre Research New Researchers' Network London, England
Graduation, 22 June, 2018
Central European University, Budapest, Hungary
Graduated with Distinction and CEU Academic Achievement Award
Thesis Defense, 18 June, 2018
Central European University, Budapest, Hungary
Completed and handed in MA Thesis, "Reframing Exclusionary Identities Through Affective Affinities: A comparative study of BDSM community formation in Budapest and London"
Central European University, Budapest, Hungary, 11 June, 2018
Ongoing research for MA thesis continues, January - June 2018. London, England; Budapest, Hungary
Undertaking fieldwork covering participant observation and semi-structured ethnographic interviews.
Delivered lecture "Gender in BDSM - A Creative Practice"
At "Creative Bodies—Creative Minds," 26 March 2018
Academic Conference organized by the University of Graz, Austria
Tour Manager for Kristina Marlen's Asia Tour, 1 - 7 January, 2018 Taipei, Tainan, and Taichung, Taiwan
The Hun Con II badge with presenters' national flags; an airplane; the cover of the journal Ritual and Cultural Performance.
Hun Con organizing team member, Budapest, Hungary, 10-12 Nov 2017
Eastern Europe's only BDSM conference
Peer-reviewed journal article published, Oct 2017
"Kinbaku: the Liminal and The Liminoid in Ritual Performance."
Performance of the Real E-journal, 1 (1): 42-51.
Began research for MA thesis, September - December 2017. London, England; Budapest, Hungary
Teaching, Community Networking, and Travel:
As Tour Manager for Kristina Marlen, kicking off her first ever Asia Tour, 29-31 December, Taipei, Taiwan
Visiting and networking with kink community, Budapest, Hungary and London, England
Visiting and networking with kink community, September 2017, Budapest, Hungary
Visiting and networking with kink community, late August 2017, Berlin, Germany
Visiting and networking with kink community, early August 2017, Helsinki, Finland
Visiting and networking with kink community, 3-31 July 2017, Tokyo and various locations, Japan
Attended play party and participated in rope play, MK Studio, 9 July 2017, Tokyo, Japan
Taught private connective rope lesson. 4 June 2017, Taipei, Taiwan
Presented lecture "WIIWD - Why we must think about What It Is We Do." 4 June 2017, Taipei, Taiwan
Taught 繩課「以繩連結」 Connective Rope Workshop with ItsPlay, 3 June 2017, Taipei, Taiwan
Visited and networked with kink community leader and gender studies lecturers, 15-25 May 2017, Taichung and Tainan, Taiwan
Taught 繩課「以繩連結」 Connective Rope Workshop with ItsPlay, 5 May 2017, Taipei, Taiwan
Taught connective rope workshop, 22 April 2017, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Taught SLAP (Singapore Learn and Play) Connective Rope Workshop, 15 April 2017, Singapore
Visited and networked with kink community, 1-12 April 2017, Bali, Indonesia
Taught connective rope workshop, 4 March 2017, Manila, Philippines
The Hong Kong Kink Con 2016 organiser badge; ItsPlay tying Nikkari Aoi; the Performance of the Real conference flier.
Hong Kong Kink Con organizing team member, Hong Kong, 11-13 Nov 2016
Asia's only general BDSM conference
Photoshoot rigger, Hong Kong, 23 May 2016
"Nikkari Aoi is in trouble"
Delivered lecture "Kinbaku: Liminality, Ritual Practise, and Performativity"
At "Ritual and Cultural Performance Hui and Symposium," 14 April 2016
Academic Conference organized by University of Otago, New Zealand
The Hong Kong Kink Con 2015 presenter badge; Les Peches Halloween flier; a person tied to a bench; a dance class.
Delivered a lecture at Asia Kink Con, Hong Kong, 15 Nov 2015
"Kinky Directions: Past, Present, and Future"
Performed at Les Peches, Hong Kong, 31 Oct 2015
kinbaku set at HK's only LBGTQQA club night
Performed at noise=noise, Hong Kong, 7 Aug 2015
2x kinbaku sets with live DJ noise music
Attended Y-Space research workshop, Hong Kong, 24 May 2015
Tamalpa Life/Art Process
Outspoken Kinky Hong Kong community member, rope practitioner. Attended munches, parties, rope socials, practiced rope privately with friends and partners throughout 2014
Presented untitled performance intervention/installation
At "Falling About," London, England, 15 December 2013
Scholar Practitioner research lab organized by University of Roehampton Dance and Performance Research Journal
Delivered lecture "Kinbaku: Freedom Through Restraint?"
At "Generative Constraints," London, England 16 November 2013
Academic conference organized by Royal Holloway University's practise research unit
Completed and handed in MA Thesis, "Toward a Non-Binary Understanding of BDSM and Rope Bondage"
Goldsmiths University, London, England, 8 September, 2013
Delivered lecture "Internet Kinbaku: Reducing a Complex Art Form to Traditional Gender Binaries?"
At "Performing Porn (after the computer became boring)," London, England, 12 July 2013
Academic conference organized by Dani Ploeger at Brunel University and ]performance space[
Began MA Performance and Culture
Goldsmiths University, London, England, September
Took part in Burning Man Festival, Black Rock Desert, Nevada, USA, 27 August - 2 September 2012
Researched kinbaku and alternative subcultures
Attended first kink class! "Kink 101" taught by Phoenix at The Stockroom, Los Angeles, USA. 15 September 2012
It's a mystery what I was up to in 2011, but it probably wasn't that kinky. 😢
Visited first BDSM club night, Club Hell, Los Angeles, USA. 18 July 2010
Wow, thanks for scrolling all the way down. Sadly, that's all folx. I wasn't kinky before 2010... Just kidding! If you want to know more about that part of my journey, please reach out using the contact page!
© 2020 by Heath Pennington. All Rights Reserved.