susan and mannequin
Until I heard a CBC Q interview yesterday, I had known of only one woman who had been romantically involved with a male mannequin—Susan Bozic, whose photos series, "The Dating Profile: Playing House," was excerpted in Geist 68.
Bozic staged herself and her mannequin boyfriend in various scenarios including playing tennis, lunching at a sidewalk cafe lying together in front of the fire and getting into bed.
The Q interview was with Suzanne Heintz, who, for the past 14 years, has been working on a project called "The Playing House Project: Life Once Removed" in which she stages elaborate photos of herself, her mannequin husband, Chauncey, and their mannequin daughter, Mary Margaret.
The interview was prompted by Heintz and her mannequin husband's re-marriage ceremony to renew their vows. Apparently, Heintz left Chauncey in Paris last year because it was going to be too expensive to bring Chauncey back to the US. She left him naked in the street in Paris (and took photos of course) but later decided she wasn't done with the project, which had since gone viral. Hence the renewal of vows. Do you think she still hopes he'll change?
I haven't heard whether Bozic has ditched her mannequin man or if anyone else is trying out this form of human-mannequin relationship, but these two projects expose the pressures to participate in and the stereotypes around "playing house"—in eye-catching, thought-provoking and funny ways.