The naked muse is a 2012 calendar featuring women’s poetry – including award-winning English poet Wendy Cope – alongside naked male muses photographed by women. Vik of Wild Women Press talks about the story behind the naked poets.
The calendar was born as an idea, one cold January night while watching over my three-year-old son as he slept. He had been diagnosed with Type One diabetes aged two. As I spent another sleepless night hourly monitoring his blood sugar levels, I decided I wanted to do something to raise awareness about this life-threatening disease and to raise funds for research into a cure.
I avoid all competitive or challenging sports, but I am good at bringing people together to get creative. I decided I would use my skills and connections as a poet and independent publisher to do exactly that. With a goal of raising £10,000 and getting 10,000 people talking about diabetes (10,000 is the number of times my son will be pricked with a needle each year) I began brainstorming.
‘My husband’s joking suggestion that I make a calendar of beautiful naked male poets started my brain whirring. Okay, I thought, we might have something a bit different here.’
My husband’s joking suggestion that I make a calendar of beautiful naked male poets started my brain whirring. Okay, I thought, we might have something a bit different here. What if I could bring together male poets, female photographers and poetry by female poets, in a creative collaboration that would explore and celebrate the role of the muse?
‘The images started arriving and we began to see something beautiful and exciting, a celebration not only of male beauty, but also of female creativity.’
It took more than eight months to bring 41 artists together, and two months of madness to bring the creative vision into a reality. By early September, the images started arriving and we began to see something beautiful and exciting, a celebration not only of male beauty, but also of female creativity: collaboration, community and positive creative action to make a difference and bring about change.
All profits from the calendar, which is on sale now, will go to charities working to support diabetes research, including the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
Order The naked muse 2012 calendar from www.wildwomenpress.com for a special price of £12.99 (includes worldwide shipping) until 13 November, thereafter £14.99 including worldwide shipping.