biography

[short form: for press and the short-of-time]

Melbourne-based Gala Vanting is an award-winning erotic film producer, sex worker, educator, pleasure activist, and erotic imaginist.  She draws from a diverse background in the sexuality field and brings a queer feminist approach to her work.  Central to all of this is the core value of intimacy and the democratization of sexy.  To find out more about her work visit msgalavanting.com and sensatefilms.com.

If you need a bio specific to one element of my work (film, kink, education, etc) for press purposes, please contact me and I’ll be happy to oblige.

[long form: for the rest of us]

I’ve been fascinated by sex and sexuality for always, and over the last 10 years have begun to make it the subject of my work through study (in both academe and the Real World), smutmaking (as producer and a performer), sex work, professional and personal BDSM, blogging, imagemaking, tantric / embodied sexual practice, and good old-fashioned doin it (and then talking about it).

I am interested in sexuality in all of its facets.  This is my work/life, my life’s work.  For as long as my memory stretches, it has been a part of my nature to indulge corporeal curiosities.  I never lost touch with that aspect of myself, and I continue to build myself into loops of indulgence and reflection.  I orchestrate pleasure for myself and for others, and then I process that into words or pictures or meditations or just compile them into my body’s pleasure-memory.  It is a very powerful thing to do what I do.

My academic background is in literature, women’s studies, and cultural studies.  While I still love reading and talking theory, I wish for my work to also have reach outside of the academy, and that the production of knowledge around sexuality can be prolific, diverse, and immediate in the public sphere.  Thusly, I fucked off my BA (and the student loan-industrial complex) and began working in the ‘alternative’ porn industry full-time in 2007.  I then followed the slippery slope of getting paid to interface with people’s sexualities into various formats of sex work, and continue to live as a happy-if-rather-critical sex worker providing BDSM experiences to my clients in Australia and the UK.

Being exposed to the sexualities of the masses has also given me plenty of exposure as to how terribly fucked we are as a culture in regards to such topics as intimacy, consent, pleasure, and sexual health, and so I began to focus more on education and public speaking around pleasure politics and erotic empowerment.  I’ve taught workshops, given talks, and appeared on panels in Australia, North America, and Europe.

Whether it’s in-person or online, educational or prurient, healing or hedonistic (and often these are complementary), here are some of the things that characterise what I do:

I believe that your authenticity is sexy.  What you already are, what you already do, what you already want (whether or not all of that is fit for public consumption).  I also think it’s important to have a few erotic goals floating around at any given time.  I believe that my own authenticity is sexy, and whether or not it satisfies mainstream or alternative tastes or values, maintaining what feels true to me is a high priority.  I also think that money is great, and I alone get to decide when I am willing to prioritise it over other elements involved in my work.  As an added bonus, I problematize the concept of authenticty in and of itself, which makes for fabulous fun defending it in public.

I acknowledge and advocate for the right to pleasure for all people from all backgrounds.  And I really do mean that.  All genders in all of their expressions, all orientations, all socioethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds.  Even white middle-class heterosexual males (though I think it’s crucial to gender and pleasure equity for them to step back and let everyone else have a go at satisfying their desires, given their long history of pleasure-privilege).

I am a sex-positive feminist.  Gail Dines just needs a good root.  I can provide a referral if needed.

I believe in access to sex-positive sex education.  I think you should show (some of) my porn to your teenagers, and give them my email address if they wanna talk about it.  I also think that it’s never too late to learn more about sex.  You will never know everything, and new things are always being discovered.  It’s kinda like space, yanno?

I believe in the healthful and healing qualities of sexuality. While of course I observe that pleasure for pleasure’s sake is a damned good thing, I am particularly interested in the ways in which we can use sex and sexuality to become more well, more whole, to slow down, to quiet our minds, and to experiment with existence.  I enjoy the esoteric aspects of sexuality, and draw comparisons between sex, entheogenics, the dreamspace, and ecology.  Sometimes there’s a very fine line between a good lay and astral travel.

I fuck arses.  It’s just part of my job.