Queen of decadence
About the subject
Before we start talking about this, go ahead and listen to the soundtrack of this one, in case you don't know the song. I should mention that I couldn't find an official version of this song on YouTube (probably too underground, like the best music). If anyone happens to know any official version of this one, please do let me now. Now, about the song, I should probably mention that I prefer the demo over the studio version found in New Vogue Children (mainly because of the dreamy bells in the refrain), back then Schwarz Stein went under the name Rudolf Steiner. I never really understood why the sudden change of name, but that is a topic for another time. Anyway, the song is damned sexy.
That is basically the topic of this piece, a femme fatale, a domina, a queen of decadence that ensnares, tortures and provides will pleasure. Freud would probably say that being fascinated by this topic reflects suppressed rape fantasies. I would know nothing of the kind. But as someone who actually enjoyed reading the Marquise de Sade's L'Histoire de Juliette, ou les Prospérités du vice, I can not deny interest in the matter. As my old friend Terence used to say: I am human and nothing human is alien to me.
Why the spider theme?
It is fair to say that the song Queen of decadence doesn't make any mention about the looks of the queen. The song is more monologue, a love message of the sweet pain that will follow. And this is the reason I decided to use the imagery of a spider: My Queen of Decadence is an ambivalent figure, she is an Ariadne, a helping beauty that spins the thread and protects and helps, while being a cruel Jorōgumo that controls and subdues her prey mercilessly.
I find the ambivalence in the spider symbolism to be quite fitting for the BDSM subject at hand. At the same time, BDSM is a rich and multifacetic culture that can not be reduced to pink plush cuffs, whips, latex clothing and bad pickup lines. Being a complex culture, I wanted to show a different face the surrender of control to powerful woman can look like.